SCOTCH PLAINS, NJ – The Scotch Plains Democratic Committee unanimously nominated Deputy Mayor Josh Losardo to run for Mayor and long-time community volunteer Ellen Zimmerman to run for Township Council. Losardo and Zimmerman will run on the Democratic line on Election Day, Nov. 3, 2020.

“I am immensely grateful to the Scotch Plains Democratic Committee for its ongoing trust and support,” Deputy Mayor Losardo said. “There is no doubt that much work needs to be done to end the status quo and create the type of change that so many of us desire. I look forward to many meaningful conversations on the campaign trail, as Ellen and I share our views and visions for a better Scotch Plains government that represents us all.”

The mayoral candidate added that Scotch Plains is closer than ever to redeveloping its downtown. 

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“If carefully planned, with the right vision, redevelopment will grow existing businesses and inspire entrepreneurs to open new retail establishments, such as restaurants and service businesses, to fulfill our ongoing needs,” Losardo said. “New residents, businesses and opportunities will grow our tax base, reducing our 90% reliance on real estate taxes to meet the costs of running our town.”

“The town’s natural beauty caught my attention,” said Losardo, who moved to Scotch Plains in 2008 from Brooklyn.  “We immediately enrolled our-then three-year-old daughter at the Jewish Community Center preschool program and made friends in this very welcoming community. Together, we have shared the joys and challenges of raising children together."

“I coached my daughter’s soccer teams, then my son’s soccer, baseball, and flag football teams, and we were able to meet more families,” he added. “My wife, Stacey, and I are thrilled that we chose Scotch Plains for our home. This is such a safe, tight-knit community. Working with you, I know can make this township reach its full potential. We just need fresh leadership.”

Deputy Mayor Losardo, who won his Council seat last year, says that community service has always been an attraction. As a high school student, he interned for then-Rep. Charles Schumer, and he also worked as Chief of Staff to a freshman Assemblywoman upon graduating from law school. Losardo later worked privately in real estate law in Manhattan before retiring from legal work in 2014.

“I had wanted to change my lifestyle from being limited to billable hours and make time to do more things that give me purpose,” Losardo explained. “I volunteered for the Scotch Plains Democratic Committee and was ultimately offered an opportunity to run for Township Council on a slate with Elizabeth Stamler and Roshan White. Together, we are focused on doing what is right for the people of Scotch Plains.”

The deputy mayor hopes that more residents are inspired to volunteer as a result of his candidacy, providing new ways of thinking, taking smart chances and making the right changes that benefit all, not just political parties.

“I am eager to introduce myself to more of my neighbors in town,” Deputy Mayor Losardo said. “The campaign will be challenging, but fun, as I seek to earn your vote to become mayor of our great hometown.

Ellen Zimmerman said she is eager to join a Democratic team that is squarely focused on improving the quality of life for all Scotch Plains residents through an inclusive government that hears all ideas and concerns.

As a resident of Scotch Plains for nearly 20 years, and with three children benefiting from the public school system, Zimmerman has been committed to volunteering in as many capacities as possible. She continually re-enforces a strong dedication to Scotch Plains by helping to fulfill the needs of others. 

For example, Zimmerman has volunteered as a Girl Scout leader for both of her daughters’ troops and served as a School Organizer for the Girl Scouts, a liaison for 10 local troops. 

While her children attended McGinn Elementary School, Ellen volunteered as co-chair for Young People’s Theater and Kids Care. 

“Ellen truly values education and appreciates the opportunities afforded to kids through the Scotch Plains schools,” Deputy Mayor Losardo said, noting from 2009-11, Zimmerman served as the McGinn PTA president. “Her tremendous volunteerism has allowed so many local programs to thrive and continue beyond her service. She has – and will continue – to make a lasting impact in Scotch Plains.”

Zimmerman has a Master’s Degree in social work from New York University. Since 2017, she has served as the Human Resources Director at the Franklin Food Bank in Somerset and works closely with food bank staff and volunteers to help members of the Central Jersey community who are struggling with food insecurity.

“It is clear that Ellen has deep concern for the needs of those around her and her work proves that she also has the drive and dedication to put her beliefs in action,” Deputy Mayor Losardo said. “It is these qualities that make Ellen an excellent candidate for Township Council. She will join me, and the rest of the Democratic team, to work tirelessly to ensure that Scotch Plains is a safe, happy and accommodating place for all.”

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