HILLSBOROUGH, NJ -  Olivia Holmes has been chosen by the Hillsborough Democratic Organization to replace Jim Bergstrom as one of their candidates for the Hillsborough Township Committee.

Holmes also received the unanimous endorsement of the Hillsborough Democratic Alliance at their July meeting last week.  

Holmes joins Jeffrey A. Wright as the Democratic candidates in November's election for two seats on the Township Committee. They join Shanel Robinson and Sara Sooy, candidates for Somerset County Freeholders, and Tom Malinowski, candidate for Congress in District 7, on the local Democratic ticket for the November 6th General Election.

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The change was necessitated by the withdrawal of Dr. Bergstrom due to expanded professional and personal demands on his time which would impact his ability to run a strong campaign, according to John Beggiato, campaign chairman. 

“While we know that Dr. Bergstrom would have been a great candidate, we fully understand and respect his decision.  This loss is mitigated by the emergence of Olivia Holmes, another great candidate, to run in his place,” Beggiatosaid.  “Ms. Holmes brings experience and involvement in many long-term Hillsborough issues, as well as a refreshing outlook on the future of our town.  She has also demonstrated her commitment to ‘small d’ democratic ideals at the national and state levels.” 

Holmes was born in Berkeley, Cal., moved to New York City in the 1980s, and has lived in Hillsborough for over 30 years.  She is married and has two sons, both graduates of Hillsborough High School.

An award-winning photographer and member of the Professional Photographers Association of New Jersey (PPANJ), she is the owner of a Hillsborough business, Olivia Holmes Photography, for the last 25 years.  Her business consists of commercial work, portraits and special events.

Since moving to Hillsborough, Holmes has been active in several issues concerning the town.  She joined the Friends of Hillsborough, a volunteer organization that helped save several hundred acres of pristine land off Mill Lane from the development of 11,000 homes.  She started the group, Preserve the Preserve, to stop construction in the Sourland flank lands. She has volunteered for Planned Parenthood by photographing meetings, marches and fund-raising events.

In January of 2017, she co-founded the National Action Group, a group of Hillsborough residents who marched, met, contacted elected representatives on issues, and conducted other non-partisan activities alongside the national resistance movement.  She has served as Democratic County Committeewoman since 2014 and was just re-elected for another term in the recent primary.

Wright grew up in Piscataway and moved to Hillsborough in 2014.  He holds a Bachelor of Science, in General Business/Finance from Norfolk State University in Virginia.  He currently works for Garden State Securities, Inc., as an Investment Adviser Representative and Financial Adviser. Previously he worked for Merrill Lynch in those capacities.

He holds Series 7 (General Securities Representative), 63 (Uniform Securities Agent), and 65 (Uniform Investment Adviser) designations and a New Jersey State Life Insurance license.  He is married to Jennifer Lagasca-Wright and has four children.  He served on Piscataway’s Zoning Board of Adjustment for seven years, as well as the Open Space Committee and Senior Citizens Committee.  He coached Little League Baseball for three years.

He is a Master Mason/Member of the Society of Free and Accepted Masons of New Jersey – Alpha Lodge 116.  He serves as Treasurer of Bethel Presbyterian Church.  He was also elected to serve as Democratic County Committeeman in the recent primary.

“We are ready to bring our best in our campaign for Township Committee by reaching out to as many residents as possible before Election Day," Holmes said. "We want to listen, and then use our organizing, financial, and personal skills to improving our town.  We have fought for better local services, sensible development policies, transparency, high ethical standards, and respectful, open communication with residents, and will continue to do so if elected to the Township Committee,” she added.

“I am eager to serve Hillsborough at the Township Committee level, and hope that Olivia Holmes and I can inspire greater, more inclusive involvement from the entire community,” Wright said.  “Local government should improve the lives of all residents in our town, and needs to have a tight connection to all of the public in order to effectively provide necessary and desired services.  We will provide excellent direction and oversight in budgeting, planning, and the complete scope of local services that our Township’s residents expect.”

More information about the candidates can be found at facebook.com/WrightandHolmes,www.WrightandHolmes.com, or by email at JeffandOlivia@WrightandHolmes.com.