SPARTA, NJ - Molly Ann Whilesmith was appointed mayor of the township by unanimous vote at the Sparta Council reorganization meeting on Tuesday night. The position of deputy mayor was also a unanimous vote for Jerry J. Murphy. 

Additional business for the special meeting was to approve advisory boards and committees, including Cultural Affairs, Economic Development, Environmental Commission, Library Board of Trustees, Municipal Alliance Committee, Parks and Monuments, Planning Board, Recreation Committee, Senior Advisory Committee, Zoning Board and various liaison appointments. All nominees listed in the agenda were supported unanimously.   

This is the fourth year of Whilesmith's first term. She served as deputy mayor for this past year. Murphy has served on the council since 2005.  He has previously been mayor and deputy mayor. 

With the back-to-back reorganization meetings of Sparta's two public governing bodies, this is the first time Sparta has had women in the top leadership positions of Township Council and Board of Education at the same time.  Whilesmith is first woman to hold the title of mayor since Ailish Hambel in 2005. Karen Scott, named to the position Monday night, is only the second woman ever  to be the president of the Board of Education.