SUMMIT, NJ - In what amounted to a victory lap for each of the five local Summit candidates -- each of whom ran unchallenged -- Hilltop City voters reelected Mayor Nora Radest and Council Members Steve Bowman (Ward 2) and Beth Little (at-Large), while electing Danny O'Sullivan (Ward 1) and Susan Hairston (Ward 1) to the governing body.
Hairston will serve out the remaining year in Matthew Gould's term. Gould passed away unexpectedly on August 13, and his wife Stephanie was sworn in on September 3 to serve through the General Election. All the victorious candidates, except Hairston, will be sworn in when the Summit Common Council holds it annual reorganization meeting next January. Hairston will be sworn in at upcoming Summit Common Council meeting on November 18.
While the exact causes are not known, circumstances associated with the 2019 election -- every local office up for election offered but one candidate -- likely had a significant effect on voter turn-out, which was a historically low 24%. The average voter turn-out over the past four previous General Elections was 53.5%.
Local candidates garnered the following vote totals, according to unofficial, key entry results:
Nora Radest - D (Mayor) -- 2,569
Beth Little - D (Common Council, at-Large) -- 2,498
Steve Bowman - R (Common Council, Ward 2) -- 1,089
Susan Hairston - D (Common Council, Ward 1) -- 1,190
Danny O'Sullivan - D (Common Council, Ward 1) -- 1,203
In other races:
Lisa Mandelblatt - D -- 2,056
Stacey Gunderman - D -- 2,008
Nancy Muñoz - 1,730
Jon Bramnick - 1,717
Union County Freeholders
Rebecca Williams - D -- 2,211
Betty Jane Kowalski - D -- 2,021
Sergio Granados- D -- 1,974
Peter Kane - R -- 1,746
Glenn Gelband - R -- 1,719
Union County Surrogate
James La Corte - D -- 2,036
Peter Lijoi - R -- 1,695