Potosnak, Stanley, Walton-McCleod, Steele Win School Board Seats

Levine to be Freeholder; Booker, Watson-Coleman Win Township


Ed Potosnak


Patricia Stanley


Latee Walton-McCleod




Incumbent member Ed Potosnak and newcomers Patricia Stanley and Latee Walton-McCleod won election to full three-year Board of Education terms on Nov. 4.

Margaret Steele won the one-year unexpired term of former board member Robert Trautmann.

These results are pending the counting of provisional ballots, which are not expected to change the outcome.

Potosnak, who was selected to fill Trautmann’s seat earlier this year, was the only incumbent running. Long-time board member Eva Nagy and board members Keisha Smith-Carrington and Delvin Burton chose not to run for re-election.

Potosnak led all three-year seat candidates with 5,436 votes. He was followed by Stanley with 5,410 votes, Walton-McCleod with 4,088 and Alex Kharazi with 3,328.


Margaret Steele

Steele garnered 4,627 votes, while her opponent for the one-year term, Laurie Merris, received 3,307 votes.

Potosnak said after the election that he was “very grateful and honored and looking forward to working with the current board members who remain and the new board members elected tonight to really bring together the community to make sure we’re fighting for students, taxpayers and families.”

“It’s quite humbling to have this support and I’m very grateful,” he said.

Stanley said her initial focus on the board will be to dive more deeply into the district budget.

“I’d really like to dive into that and see what’s behind all those numbers,” she said.

Stanley thanked her supporters, saying, “I plan to do my very best to help the children of Franklin get an education for a lifetime.”

Walton-McCleod said she was “overjoyed and excited” about her win.

“I’m excited about becoming part of the team and to get working,” she said. “Let’s go Warriors.”

Walton-McCleod said her first priority will be fill key district administrative positions that are still filled by interims.

“Then we also have to see what’s going to happen in December with the referendum,” she said. “We’ll be walking in in January as new board members and that will be on our plate.”

In the county Freeholder race, Mayor Brian Levine and his running mate, incumbent Freeholder Peter Palmer, defeated Democratic challengers Anthony Pranzatelli and Joan Pritchard.

Palmer garnered 41,618 votes, while Levine won 40,767 votes. Pritchard received 31,204 votes and Pranzatelli received 31,028 votes.

Levine’s win means he will have to resign as township mayor prior to being sworn in as a Freeholder in January, a move that Levine said leaves him with mixed emotions.

“I really loved being mayor, I’ve done it for so long,” he said. “But I think I’ll love being Freeholder, too.”

Levine, a CPA, said he would turn his attention to numbers while on the board.

“I’ll be reaching down (to the towns) and seeing if there are more opportunities for economies of scale and purchasing services,” he said. “There’s got to be ways to do that.”

On the national level, incumbent U.S. Sen. Cory Booker crushed his Republican opponent, Jeff Bell, in the township, garnering 8,987 votes to Bell’s 4,030. Booker went on to win a full six-year term

In the 12 Congressional District voting in the township, Democrat Bonnie Watson-Coleman did similar damage to the campaign of her Republican opponent, township resident Dr. Aleita Eck, receiving 10,547 votes to Eck’s 6,922. Watson-Coleman won her race as well.

(Editor’s note: We’re pending a comment from Margaret Steele.)

Election Night 2014





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