Ferrante and El-Badawi win Township Committe seats in Cranbury

ANDREW HARRISON/STAFF

The Cranbury Township Committee will continue to maintain a Democratic majority in 2022 after the elections of Mike Ferrante and Eman El-Badawi.

Following the Nov. 2 General Election, Democrats Ferrante and El-Badawi held off Republican challengers Robert Bolger and Cynthia Hughes-Smithers for two seats on Cranbury’s governing body, which each carry a three-year term.

According to unofficial results posted online from the Middlesex County Clerk’s Office, as of press time on Nov. 9, Ferrante, who serves as Cranbury’s mayor in 2021, received 960 votes, and El-Badawi received 901 votes.

Bolger, a Republican opponent, had earned 692 votes, and Republican Hughes-Smithers received 686 votes.

There were 13 write-in votes cast as of Nov. 9.

The Nov. 2 election was held with vote-b- mail ballots, with early in-person voting in late October, and with in-person voting on Nov. 2.

According to Middlesex County, Nov. 9 was the last day for mail-in ballots to be tabulated. Provisionals ballots are still being processed. There were 10,325 total for Middlesex County and 67 for Cranbury, as of press time.

“There can also be cured ballots, with signature issues, that could be counted by Nov. 15,” said Arianna Rosales, communications coordinator for Middlesex County.

The results for the two open seats, each carrying a three-year term, are unofficial until certified by Middlesex County.

Ferrante, who is set to retain his seat and a second term on the Township Committee, said he is very honored that the citizens of Cranbury elected him to a second term.

“It will give me an opportunity to continue some important projects that are in progress: the library construction, the lake dredging, and the effort to improve complete streets safety in our town,” he said. “I will continue to focus on transparency in local government and improved town-wide communication.”

He said he looks forward to seeing what the Economic Development Advisory Committee will bring to Cranbury’s 325th celebration in 2022, and he will work to keep the village area a vibrant, walkable retail zone.

“I hope to continue the annual session on ‘De-mystifying Local Government’ as well. Finally, I will continue to work to make sure everyone feels welcome and included in our town,” he said.

“Ours is a town of volunteers, and many of the people who do the heavy lifting of volunteer work in our town will soon want to make way for the next generation of volunteers, so I hope to expand the circle of volunteers in town.”

Ferrante added that the governing body will have turned over completely from four years ago, with new voices and fresh energy seeking to make Cranbury the best it can be.

“It has been my greatest honor to serve the residents of Cranbury, and I look forward to serving our town for a second term,” he said.

El-Badawi, a newcomer to the Township Committee, will serve her first term of public office once she is sworn in.

“As a regular volunteer in Cranbury, a seat on the Township Committee will expand my ability to serve this community,” she said. “Being a non-traditional candidate, I was humbled by the overwhelming support I received during the election process. This support speaks volumes towards Cranbury’s commitment to elect the best candidates to the Township Committee.”

In 2022, after the reorganization meeting, she will join two other women on the governing body, Democrat Barbara Rogers and Republican Evelyn Spann, as they will be the majority on the five-member Township Committee and serve alongside Ferrante and Township Committeeman Matt Scott, a Democrat.

“I’d like to spend my time on the Township Committee addressing issues that I campaigned on. I look forward to continuing my outreach to residents and youths to encourage their increased participation in township activities,” El-Badawi said. “Additionally, I’d like to address some of our crumbling infrastructure, including roads, sidewalks and storm drains. Supporting our team tasked with assessing and improving our township resilience to natural disasters will be critical.”