CRANFORD, NJ – At the Sept. 25, 2018 Joint Meeting of the Union County College Boards of Trustees and Governors, two new members were sworn in: Edward J. Chrystal, Jr., of Scotch Plains, will serve as a new Governor, and Miguel A. Merino, of Elizabeth, will serve as a new Trustee.  Union County College Board of Trustees Chair Victor Richel welcomed Chrystal and Merin to the meeting and initiated their swearing in ceremony.

Edward J. Chrystal, Jr., is a Brigadier General for the New Jersey Army National Guard. As Brigadier General, he was responsible for the management of the response and support operations during Hurricanes Irma, Harvey, Sandy, Irene, Katrina, and Floyd. For his work, he received multiple accolades including the Bronze Star Service Medal and the Meritorious Service Award.

Chrystal is employed by the New Jersey Department of Military and Veterans Affairs as the Superintendent for Veterans Haven North, a New Jersey state transitional facility for homeless veterans. He is responsible for more than 100 residents and a staff of counselors, kitchen and maintenance workers, and members of the administration. Previously, Chrystal was a member of the New Jersey State Police. He retired at the rank of Lieutenant.

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He holds a Master of Science in Strategic Studies from the United States Army War College, and from Seton Hall University, he holds a Master of Arts in education administration and a Bachelor of Arts in criminal justice.

Miguel A. Merino currently serves as a member of the City of Elizabeth New Jersey Commissioner Planning Board. In this position, he advises the City Council, City staff, and other agencies and boards on matters affecting community development. An entrepreneur and small business owner, Merino has eighteen years of experience in the painting industry and established his company, Fresh & Clean Painting, LLC, in 2014.

Merino served in the U.S. Marine Corps for five years, in basic infantry as a truck and hummer mechanic. His hard work and commitment eventually earned him the highest rank of Corporal E-4. In May 2001, he became a member of the Marine Corps League Martin Danowski Detachment. He is a Past Commandant and a lifetime member. The league members gather to preserve the traditions and promote the interests of the United States Marine Corps.

“Both Mr. Merino and Mr. Chrystal are pillars of the community. They have both served our country and understand the true meaning of service. Their perspective and leadership will be valuable to the Board, and we are happy to welcome them,’” stated Union’s Board of Trustees Chairman Victor M. Richel.

Union County College is a public comprehensive community college providing quality, affordable, accessible educational programs that serve the greater Union County region. It is the first of New Jersey’s 19 Associate Degree colleges, serving both career-minded and transfer-oriented students since 1933. The College enrolls almost 20,000 credit, non-credit, and continuing education students and is accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education. Many programs lead to an Associate in Arts, Associate in Science, or an Associate in Applied Science degree.

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