BELLEVILLE, NJ - Belleville Mayor Michael Melham swore in three new members to the Board of Education last night for three-year terms: Luis Muñiz, Ralph Tunis and Gaby Bennett-Meany.

Bennett-Meany was also appointed Vice President by her peers, a unique honor for a first-year board member.

The three board members ran together for school board in November, promising to foster a stronger bond between township officials and the school district, along with parents and teachers. The board members say they will work to support and sustain a system of learning that engages all students.

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Melham was a strong supporter for the team during the election, saying the trio will work to greatly improve the public schools. “They are an influx of new blood,” the mayor said. “They absolutely have my support.”

Muñiz has lived in Belleville for more than 20 years and is the proud father of four school-aged children, currently enrolled in the township school system.  Muñiz, a Realtor, is a volunteer soccer coach.

Tunis is a life-long resident with deep community ties. He volunteered with the Cerebral Palsy Center in Belleville and worked with the township’s D.A.R.E. program.

Bennett-Meany has owned a home in town for 28 years. She is actively involved in the high school, where one of her children recently graduated. She has more than 25 years as an educator, and served as the high school’s HSA vice president. She is also president of the #BetterBelleville Civic Association.