‘He loved this town’


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Longtime Mayor Steve Benowitz “loved Bordentown Township and lived to serve the people of the township.”

And that’s what he did for so many years. Benowitz was first elected and served on Township Committee from 1979 to 1981, then returned in 2013. He was chosen by his fellow committee members to serve as mayor in 2014, and again for the past seven consecutive years from 2017 to 2023. Benowitz’s most recent tenure as mayor has seen unprecedented growth and prosperity in Bordentown Township.

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“To serve the people of Bordentown Township has been my distinct honor and pleasure,” Benowitz had said at the end of last year. “It is with deep regret that my health has required an abrupt ending to this service. I am confident that the team we have created will continue to serve our constituents with the same level of commitment that makes me so very proud to be a resident of this great town.

“I greatly appreciate our residents, fellow township committee members, and township staff for their support during my leadership over the past decade.”

“Bordentown Township mourns the recent loss of Benowitz, who passed away on Saturday evening, Feb. 10,” according to a statement on the township website. He was 78.

“I have known Steve Benowitz for about 10 years,” Mayor Eugene M. Fuzy said. “He recruited me to run for office after appointing me to the Environmental Commission. He taught me the ropes of campaigning and being an elected official. He emphasized our roles with the public and how to be bridges to the residents and the township.

“He loved this town very much and lived to serve the people of the township. He will be missed by our staff, our committee, and our residents. It was my honor and privilege to serve with him and be amongst his friends.”

Benowitz was born in Philadelphia on March 20, 1945, to Frances and Bernard Benowitz. He grew up in the little-known Roosevelt in Monmouth County. After graduating Hightstown High School, he continued his studies at Trenton Junior college, now Mercer County Community College, and earned his bachelor’s degree at Rider College, now University, and his master’s degree at Trenton State College, now The College of New Jersey, also earning doctoral credits at Rutgers, according to his obituary.

His career consisted of time spent as director of education of Yardville Youth Correction Center and Rahway State Prison. Later, he was director of special needs at Burlington County Vocational and Technical Schools (BCIT).

In 1967, his life changed by joining together in matrimony with his wife Ellen of 56 years. Their journey together produced two children, Jill and Frank, three grandchildren, Rebecca, Francine and Madelaine, and two great grandchildren, Raymond and Jackson.

In 1969, the Benowitz family moved to Bordentown. Shortly following the move to the historic town, Benowitz became actively involved in politics on the local, state and even national levels. His main belief and commitment was to his new town of Bordentown. He believed the best way to institute change was at the local level. He first became a township committeeman when elected in 1978. It was during his service as deputy mayor that he helped to “break ground” of Northern Community Park. It was only approximately a mile from his home that was established in 1975 and it’s where he remained until his last days. He absolutely loved the community park and would frequent it over the years with his family, playing tennis and basketball along with watching his son play sports there over the years, according to his obituary.

Fast forward to 2013, where he again felt the calling to serve the residents of Bordentown. After being elected back on the dais, once again he had the privilege of serving as deputy mayor prior to being chosen to serve as mayor for nearly seven consecutive years, being one of the longest termed mayors in the history of Bordentown Township.

His son would often joke of his father that he is the only person that he knew that turned a part-time job into two full-time jobs. Benowitz served the residents of Bordentown to the very best of his abilities and always made time to listen and act on behalf of his constituents. He led by example and seemingly put others before himself.

The comedian Rodney Dangerfield once said, “The way my luck is running, if I was a politician, I would be honest.”

“I guess according to Rodney Dangerfield, Benowitz was unlucky, as he proudly and honestly served as a representative of the people of Bordentown Township for so many years throughout his lifetime,” according to his obituary.

In lieu of flowers, the Benowitz family would greatly appreciate donations to be made to the “Steve Benowitz Memorial Scholarship Fund.” Checks should be made payable to: Bordentown Township Senior Citizens Club and mailed in C/O: Dorothy Sherman, 13 Linden Road, Bordentown, N.J. 08505-1507 (Memo on check: Memory of Steve of Benowitz)

Benowitz’s funeral service was held on Friday Feb. 16 at 1 p.m. at the Bordentown Home for Funerals. Internment followed at Bordentown Cemetery.

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