MONTVILLE, NJ – Democrat Emily Ryzuk has announced that she will run for Montville Township Committee once again this year, against current Deputy Mayor Frank Cooney, who will be running for his second term.

Ryzuk announced her intention at the Democrats’ Feb. 15 meeting at the Senior House.

Ryzuk told the assembly at the meeting that her undergraduate degree is in political science but her later training is in psychotherapy; she has a specialty in sexual violence.

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“I ran the sexual assault center in Morris County for a couple of years and I got to write grants; I got to understand the basis for programs that are funded by the government,” she said. “I really understood the funding piece of things – and the limitations and challenges that came along with it.”

Ryzuk said it’s become “very apparent” how important it is to run for office, for both women and concerned citizens.

She referred to the school shooting in Florida and said, “It’s almost to the point where you say ‘eh – happened again’ – except you don’t feel that way inside. It makes you feel a little sicker every single time.”

Ryzuk said the reason she is running is for her children.

“I believe we need to leave this world a better place than we found it,” she said. “They deserve a world where they can be safe. We start at a local level and ‘trickle up.’ We can change things as a society. We convinced [Congressman Frelinghuysen] not to re-run. We had a wonderful momentum with that. But we need to continue. We are an avalanche of snowflakes.”

Ryzuk said single-party rule, i.e., the fact that the Montville Township Committee is composed of five Republicans, is another reason she is running.

“It’s too much,” she said. “If you have this echo chamber of party politics, then nobody’s questioning things.”

She thanked the assembly for the support she received for last year’s run and said she wanted to keep the momentum going. She said she’s excited about the new candidates running for office at the various levels of government.

“I’m inspired, and I want to inspire everybody,” she said. “So let’s go get ‘em.”

Republican Cooney won his three-year term and was sworn in on Jan. 1, 2016. He had run against Democrat Dan Grant.

Last November, Ryzuk ran with fellow Democrat Lucy Tullo for the two open township committee seats vacated by Deb Nielson and Jim Sandham, but were defeated by June Witty and former Board of Ed President Matthew Kayne.

The Morris County Clerk's office reported that Kayne received 3,868 votes and Witty received 3,885, while Ryzuk received 2,025 and Tullo received 2,023 votes.

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