HVN-Incumbents and newcomers highlight Hopewell Valley elections

There will be some new faces and some old ones on several of the governing bodies -including the school board – in the Hopewell Valley, based on the unofficial results of the general election this week.

The vote totals for the Hopewell Township Committee, the Hopewell Borough Council, the Pennington Borough Council and the Hopewell Valley Regional School District Board of Education reflect ballots cast on the voting machines, but not mail-in and provisional ballots.

Incumbent Hopewell Township Committeewoman Julie Blake, a Democrat who is serving as deputy mayor this year, beat back a challenge from Republican Party candidate Edward M. Jackowski III to keep her seat. The term is for three years.

Blake received 3,940 votes to out-poll Jackowski, who earned 3,251 votes.

Blake thanked Hopewell Township voters for giving her a chance to serve on Hopewell Township Committee for the next three years, and for taking part in the general election this week.

“The past three years have taught me how important it is to participate in our democracy. I have also learned how strong a community can be when it comes together to try to solve a common problem or address a common need,” Blake said.

Blake also thanked Jackowski “for sharing this adventure with me.” She also thanked the many Hopewell Township residents who shared their thoughts and ideas with her during the campaign.

Elsewhere in the Hopewell Valley, there will be two new faces on the Hopewell Borough Council because incumbent Borough Councilwomen Debra Lehman and Shelby Tewell did not seek re-election. Lehman is a Democrat and Tewell is a Republican.

In a three-way race, Hopewell Borough voters sent Democrats Samara McAuliff and Debra Stuhler to take the two seats being vacated by Lehman and Tewell. Republican Party candidate Mark Bovenizer fell short in his bid for one of the two seats. The term is for three years.

McAuliff was the top vote-getter with 709 votes and her running mate, Stuhler, earned 708 votes. Bovenizer trailed with 258 votes.

In Pennington Borough, there was an uncontested race to fill two seats on the Pennington Borough Council. The term is for three years.

Incumbent Borough Councilwoman Deborah L. Gnatt and her running mate, Elizabeth Semple Rosenblatt – both Democrats – earned 903 votes and 886 votes, respectively. Rosenblatt will replace Borough Councilman Joseph Lawver, who did not seek re-election.

Finally, at the Hopewell Valley Regional School District Board of Education, there were three candidates seeking two seats on the school board to represent Hopewell Township, and an uncontested race for one seat to represent Pennington Borough. The term is for three years.

Newcomers Deborah “Debbie” Linthorst and Debra M. O’Reilly earned more votes than Arleen Curran to claim the two seats on the school board earmarked for Hopewell Township residents.

Linthorst was the top vote-getter with 3,180 votes, followed by O’Reilly who recorded 2,563 votes. Curran received 2,196 votes. School board members Lisa Wolff and Leigh Ann Peterson did not seek re-election.

Incumbent school board member Joanna “Jenny” Long ran unopposed to represent Pennington Borough on the school board. She received 718 votes.

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