WESTFIELD, NJ — Three women who work as educators have been elected to the school board.
Leila Morrelli, Sonal Patel and Sahar Aziz were elected to the Westfield Board of Education, the results of the Nov. 3 election certified on Friday show. Although the tallies in the 11-way race changed as additional ballots were counted in the election conducted almost entirely by mail, the Election Night outcome remains unchanged.
Morrelli, Patel and Aziz were among 11 candidates to vie for three seats on the board of education. They will take office in January.
Morrelli, who works as a speech language pathologist in the Mountainside School District, was the top vote-getter, garnering 6,498 votes, the results show.
Patel, a middle school math teacher in Edison, netted 5,778 votes, the results show. With 5,294 votes, Aziz beat out Paul Monusky for the third seat by a margin of 371 votes over his 4,923 votes, the results show. Aziz is a law professor at Rutgers University Law School.
On Election Night, unofficial results showed Aziz 395 votes ahead of Monusky — a gap that narrowed by 24 votes by the time the final tallies were in.
Six of the candidates had run on slates, with Morrelli, Monusky and Aziz running under the slogan “Preparing Tomorrow’s Leaders.” Wendy H. Rogers, Deborah Feldman-Kahn and David Sexton ran on a slate under the slogan “Bright Futures.”
Kent Diamond, whose term expires at the end of the year, ran independently as did Priti Dave and Patel. Robert Benacchio, an attorney, who last year lost a bid for the town council, ran as a write-in in the school board race. The figures posted by the clerk’s office show 791 voters cast ballots for write-in candidates.
Out of 24,964 registered voters in Westfield, 77.7% comprising 19,404 people cast ballots, 75.7% of whom voted by mail, according to the Union County Clerk’s Office. Countywide, voter turnout stood at 69.3%, according to the Clerk’s Office. It marked an increase over the 64% voter turnout in Westfield during the 2016 presidential election, which in the final tally saw 68.9% of registered voters across Union County cast ballots, according to the Union County Clerk's Office.
Local Voting in Federal Races
In Westfield, 50.3% of registered voters comprising 12,550 people picked President-elect Joseph Biden, while 24.9% of registered voters comprising 6,216 people chose President Donald Trump.
In the race for the Seventh District congressional seat, 11,004 Westfield voters, comprising 44.1% of those registered, chose the apparent winner, Democratic incumbent Rep. Tom Malinowski, while 7,940 voters comprising 31.8% of the local electorate chose his Republican challenger, Tom Kean, of Westfield.
Email Matt Kadosh at email@example.com | Twitter: @MattKadosh
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