Senator Patrick Diegnan Visits With Roosevelt Fourth Graders

Credits: TAPinto South Plainfield
Credits: TAPinto South Plainfield
Credits: TAPinto South Plainfield
Credits: TAPinto South Plainfield
Credits: TAPinto South Plainfield
Credits: TAPinto South Plainfield
Credits: TAPinto South Plainfield

SOUTH PLAINFIELD, NJ – Fourth graders at South Plainfield’s Roosevelt Elementary School welcomed Senator Patrick J. Diegnan, Jr. (18th L.D.) on Oct. 6. Diegnan, a lifelong resident of the borough, spent close to an hour speaking with the students on a range of topics, including but not limited to the upcoming presidential election, voting, and his role as a state senator.

 “We are a democracy, a place where everybody gets to vote [and] the right to vote separates us from other countries,” Diegnan told the fourth graders and offered to provide them with voter registration material to bring home. “The right to vote is one of the most important things in the world. Go home and tell you parents to vote…It is so very, very important.”

In speaking about next month’s presidential election, Diegnan was s impressed by the show of hands indicating many of Roosevelt’s fourth graders had watched the first debate. The senator also noted that, in addition to electing the country’s next president, voters this year also have the opportunity to elect representatives for other state, county, borough, and even board of education, this November.

Sign Up for E-News

Diegnan, a member of the Democratic Party, has been involved in New Jersey politics for the past 14 years. He was first elected to represent the 18th L.D. in the New Jersey State Assembly back in 2002 and last November, was re-elected to his eighth consecutive term. In May 2016, Diegnan was appointed to fill a vacancy in the Senate and, as a result, must run this November to fill the year remaining on the seat. If elected, he will have to run for his own, four-year term in November 2017.

“If you set you mind to it, you can be anything you want to be. Don’t let anybody tell you that you can’t,” Diegnan said.

Last Tuesday’s program was organized by Roosevelt teacher Alyson Oller who, along with the other fourth grade teachers, provided students with some background on their local senator prior to his arrival. “Ms. Oller thought it would be good idea for a local representative to come in and talk to the children about government and civics,” said Roosevelt Principal Robert Diehl. “It was a great idea because it provided an up-close-and-perform touch, especially with the election coming up.”

During his visit, Diegnan also shared personal stories and accomplishments from his personal life and political career as well as answered a variety of questions ranging from ‘have you ever met President Obama?’ and ‘what does congress do?’ to ‘have you ever attended a national convention?’ and ‘are you really the youngest of seven children?’ He also encouraged the students to go visit the state’s capitol in Trenton and, with the assistance of representative from the Middlesex County Board of Elections, ran a mock election using an actual voting machine.

“The kids were outstanding, they very polite and attentive,” said Diegnan following his visit. “I think it is very important that they learn about our democratic process and it was very refreshing to see how informed they are.”

Added Diehl, “The fourth graders are old enough to understand and be excited about the process and having Senator Diegnan here was a win-win. Not only is he a local senator but he also lives in South Plainfield so it is someone who can they relate to.”

TAPinto South Plainfield is South Plainfield’s only free daily paper. Sign up to get all the news as it happens at and follow us on Facebook at and on Twitter at @SoplainfieldTAP.

TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Be Interested In

Sign Up for E-News

South Plainfield

The Athlete of the Week Tatianna Sutor Girls’ Lacrosse

The South Plainfield High School Girls’ Lacrosse team is off to a fantastic start to their 2018 season with a record of 2-0. This past week, the Lady Tigers crushed division rival Bishop Ahr by the score of 14-2, and then went on to beat Boonton 6-3.  A huge part of the success for South Plainfield has been due in a large part to the contributions of senior goalie Tatianna ...

The Athlete of the Week Roberto Gonzalez Baseball

The South Plainfield High School baseball team had a great start to their 2018 season. This past Saturday, the Tigers won their home opener against division rival John F. Kennedy. South Plainfield defeated the Mustangs by a score of 2-1 to start the year off with a win.  A huge part of the success was the consistent pitching of junior pitcher, Roberto Gonzalez.

After a successful ...


Victor Kochmann, 92, passed away on Wednesday, March 21, 2018 surrounded by his loving family in ...
Read more

Letters to the Editor

Letter Welcoming Mike Zushma to Politics

April 19, 2018

Dear Editor, 

I'd like to welcome Mike Zushma to the world of politics and congratulate him on being selected as the town's Democratic Chairman.


I've served as Republican chair since 2009, and I've always enjoyed spending my time helping good people get elected to office.  In South Plainfield, it's never about party:  People work together and try ...

Community Happenings

South Plainfield High School Hall Of Fame Is Seeking Nominees

April 19, 2018

SOUTH PLAINFIELD, NJ - The South Plainfield High School Hall of Fame Committee is again holding their search for candidates for induction into the SPHS Hall of Fame.  The Hall of Fame was established at South Plainfield High School to recognize outstanding graduates as leaders in their fields who could serve as role models for current and future students.

Candidates will be evaluated on ...

Kennedy School Welcomes Author Lisa Mullarkey

April 19, 2018

SOUTH PLAINFIELD, NJ – Teacher and children’s author Lisa Mullarkey stopped by John F. Kennedy Elementary School on April 18. 

“This year’s guest author was very well received by our students and staff. Mrs. Mullarkey spent the day motivating our students to be future writers," said Kennedy Principal Kevin Hajduk. "It was a privilege for our students at ...

Holy Savior Academy to Hold Open House on April 24

April 18, 2018

SOUTH PLAINFIELD, NJ – Holy Savior Academy, an AdvancedED accredited Middlebrook Deanery Catholic School located in South Plainfield, will hold an open house the evening of Tuesday, April 24.At this time, prospective students and their families in pre-K3 through 8th grade will have the opportunity to tour the school, meet teachers and register. 

“Holy Savior ...

South Plainfield Public Library presents: Wills, Estate Planning & Probate Seminar

April 17, 2018

SOUTH PLAINFIELD, NJ - On Thursday, April 19 at 7pm, the South Plainfield Public Library welcomes lawyer Kenneth A. Vercammen who will present a program, “Wills, Estate Planning & Probate”.  The NJ Probate Law made a number of substantial changes in Probate and the administration of estates and trusts in New Jersey.  The main topics that will be discussed ...

Upcoming Events


Sun, April 22, 1:00 PM

South Plainfield

Open House 312 Elissa Court South Plainfield

Real Estate


Sun, April 22, 2:00 PM

South Plainfield

Suburban Woman's Club Luncheon/Fashion Show April ...


Sat, April 28, 9:00 AM

South Plainfield

Spring Wellness Health Fair - Mayor's Wellness


Sat, April 28, 7:00 PM

South Plainfield

A Tribute to our Veterans - Jim Barone


Sun, April 29, 2:00 PM

South Plainfield

Autism Awareness Event on April 29th


Sat, May 5, 9:00 AM


Color Me Run to End Domestic Violence


The Truth About My Reading

The Truth About My Reading

I didn't get my Composition and Literature teacher at Montclair State College at all. A crusty old man with a dour disposition, Mr. Smith always seemed angry and rude. He appropriately intimidated freshmen, even me, an English major, who found this common core course beneath my dignity. Frankly, as a graduate of Highland Park High School, and a survivor of Mrs.


Your library is a hub of education and entertainment that is available to you not just when the library is open, but at all hours, thanks to our great online resources.  

If you want to brush up on your computer skills, or learn something new, try Learning Express.  You can access it through the library’s website. Once you’ve registered (you’ll need ...

Suburban Woman’s Club Hears Presentation on WWII Air Force Service Pilots

During World War II, one thousand seventy-four aviators, all with prior experience and airman certificates, flew over 60 million miles; transported every type of military aircraft; towed targets for live anti-aircraft gun practice; simulated strafing missions and transported cargo. Thirty-eight members of this elite group lost their lives and one went missing in performing their ...

Press Releases

Senator Diegnan And Council Candidate Kristine Keefe Recognized By New Jersey Language Educators Association

April 18, 2018

WOODBRIDGE, NJ - Senator Patrick Diegnan and Democratic Council Candidate Kristine Keefe were given awards by the Foreign Language Educators of New Jersey at their annual conference held in Woodbridge on April 14.

Senator Diegnan received the President’s Award for his sponsorship of legislation encouraging world language education in our public schools.   In presenting the ...