WEST ORANGE, NJ - At Tuesday’s West Orange Town Council Meeting, the council and township bid farewell to Councilwoman Patty Spango, who resigned from her position last Friday because she was nominated as Deputy Superintendent of Election for Essex County by Governor Chris Christie.
The ex-councilwoman was full of emotion as she took the podium to express her gratitude for the opportunities allotted to her during her tenure.
“This is bittersweet for me,” Spango said. “As many of you are aware, I resigned my position as Councilwoman for the Township of West Orange, effective September 4th.”
Spango went on to say it has been a pleasure serving as a councilwoman for seven years, thanking for John McKeon for electing her under his term as West Orange Mayor, and then thanking current mayor Robert Parisi.
“I don’t think there’s anyone more devoted and committed to this township than our Mayor,” she said.
She next thanked Jack Sayers for being the “best business administrator there is.” She added, “I don’t know how you keep up the pace.”
She also spoke glowingly of Chief Financial Officer John Gross.
“You’ve been my confidant and my friend, and I cherish the relationship we’ve developed,” she said.
The former councilwoman also thanked various other people in positions of government and office.
But Spango saved her former council peers for last, starting with Councilwoman Susan McCartney.
“Susan, when I was first elected you welcomed me and embraced me. That was I believe the first time in the history of West Orange we had two women sitting on the council,” she said, pointing out that despite the difficulties women face in the world of politics that McCartney was never hostile toward her, but rather was “warm and receiving to me.”
To Councilman Victor Cirilo, Spango said “through the years we’ve fed off each other. I thank you for your commitment and dedication to West Orange.”
To Joe Krakoviak, Spango said “What can I say? I have been known as the colleague that has always questioned you and called you on your actions,” and added that despite them not seeing eye to eye at times, “I do believe you have the best interest of West Orange in your heart.”
And to Council President Jerry Guarino, Spango highlighted her close friendship with him.
“You’ve worked so hard in serving the township,” she said. “It has been a pleasure working alongside you.”
Spango also thanked the council as a whole.
“It has been a pleasure working with all of you. We’ve had some contentious moments and have not always agreed, but I believe in my heart we always had one common thread—to accomplish and work toward what was best for the township of West Orange.”
Spango finished her speech by thanking all the residents who voted for her.
Mayor Robert Parisi paid his respects to Spango.
“You come to work as a council member each and every day with the best interest of this community,” he said, wishing her the best in her future endeavors.
Guarino said, “Good friendships are always hard to come by. It’s been a great experience working with you,” before presenting her with flowers from the council.
Cirillo said, “Patty represented an interesting demographic: born and raised in a town and purchased a home in the town she grew up in, and a business owner. She had a certain a perspective that I respected, and I’m going to miss that, so I want to wish her well.”
To learn the next steps for applying for the vacated position, clcik HERE.