The Summit Common Council is the policy making and supervising body that governs the City and oversees its management. Council should work with the Mayor, State and County legislators, employees and others to improve the welfare of the city, be fiscally responsible to our taxpayers and legislate with transparency and integrity. Three vacancies exist on our seven member Council for 2014; At-Large for a two year term and Wards I & II for three year terms.

Councilman Gregory Drummond, Esq. has held the At-Large seat for the past two years. He is the owner of a title insurance agency with a downtown office. Gregory has chaired both Law and Buildings & Grounds Committees, worked diligently as a member of the Planning Board, Summit Downtown Inc, the Civil Rights Commission, Redevelopment Committee, and as liaison to the Parking Advisory Committee, the Board of Education and Summit private schools. Gregory’s family is well-established in Summit and his father was City Solicitor. He and his wife Leslie have three children who attend Summit schools. Gregory has been totally reliable and trust-worthy and serves as a sounding board for legal issues as the sole attorney on Council.

The unopposed Ward I candidate is Mike McTernan, a Dartmouth College Cum Laude graduate with 26 years of major banking and financial services experience. Mike and his wife Julie have four children, three boys who attend our public schools and a daughter at Oak Knoll. He has been very active in Summit youth and sports and was President of the Summit Police Athletic League. Mike asks intelligent questions and is well prepared with meaningful answers. He will definitely be a strong player in the financial future of Summit.

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Sandra Lizza is the non-controversial candidate in Ward II with impeccable credentials. Sandy graduated with distinction from the University of Virginia, holds an MBA from William & Mary, and served in Finance, Planning and Purchasing at Altria for 24 years. She is the mother of two Eagle Scouts who are enrolled at Georgetown and the University of Chicago, and the wife of a prominent attorney. Sandy is a trustee of the Summit Area Public Foundation, a past director of Bonds of Courage, active in City organizations and adept in many areas. She has insightfully questioned actions that could eventually save the City substantial expenditures. Council needs female representation to diversify its perspective and outreach in the Summit community. Sandy will make an immediate positive contribution.

Please note that I have not identified party affiliations because I feel that Summit voters should elect the best candidates regardless of party. In my personal evaluation of leadership, integrity, temperament and teamwork, I fully endorse Gregory Drummond, Mike McTernan and Sandra Lizza for Summit Council, and encourage those with similar qualities to volunteer for future opportunities. We need younger vibrant minds to cope with the challenges of tomorrow.

Rich Madden,

Council President