Clark A.A.R.P Donates Hats To Runnells Hospital Patients
Interfaith Conference to Focus On Security in Sacred Places
KEEPING SANCTUARIES SAFE…Union County Sheriff Ralph G. Froehlich, left, and the Reverend James Reisner of the First Presbyterian Church of Elizabeth will present an interfaith seminar on “The Safety and Security of Sacred Places” at the First Presbyterian Parish Hall, 42 Broad Street, next Thursday, September 24, beginning at 7:30 p.m. All religious leaders are invited to attend.
Clark Chapter No. 3733 of the American Association of Retired Persons (A.A.R.P.) recently donated
colorful, hand-decorated hats for residents and patients of Runnells Specialized Hospital of Union County in Berkeley Heights to wear while enjoying outdoor activities in the hospital’s courtyard area and taking summer day trips. The donation was the idea of Marion Connolly of Westfield, the group’s Volunteer Coordinator for all Runnells projects. Designed for both men and women, the hats are decorated with silk flowers, trinkets, ribbons and happy faces. Some are adorned with sports memorabilia. The chapter also donated almost 40 gift baskets filled with toiletries such as hand cream, lotion, soap, shampoo and hair products. “The summer hats project is a most welcome one, and we appreciate the generosity and thoughtfulness of Marion and the Clark A.A.R.P.,” remarked Freeholder Chairman Daniel P. Sullivan, who attended the presentation at the hospital. The Clark A.A.R.P. has other planned projects to benefit Runnells Hospital, including the knitting, crocheting and sewing of wheelchair lap robes, shoulder shrugs and tote bags, and the collection of jewelry, trinkets, small picture frames, note paper and books to be awarded as prizes for the residents’ bingo games.
Union County Sheriff Ralph G. Froehlich and the Reverend James Reisner of the First Presbyterian Church of Elizabeth will present an interfaith seminar on “The Safety and Security of Sacred Places.” The conference will be held next Thursday, September 24, at 7:30 p.m. at the First Presbyterian Parish Hall, 42 Broad Street in Elizabeth. All religious leaders are invited to attend. Security specialists from the Union County Sheriff’s Office will present suggestions and recommendations to enhance security at houses of worship. There will also be an opportunity for open dialogue among religious leaders during the program,
according to Sheriff Froehlich. Anyone wishing to attend is asked to call the First Presbyterian Church at (908) 353-1518.
COUNTY COOL... Union County residents await the sweet tunes of the Gully Low Jazz Band from the stage at the first annual Jersey Jazz by the Lake in Cranford’s Nomahegan Park last Sunday. Thousands, like Tim Evans and Marie Constantino of Roselle, pictured here, attended the two-day event, which included performer Lionel Hampton. Union County Freeholders organized the happening.
GRATEFUL FOR DONATIONS…Admiring the festive hats donated by Clark Chapter 3733 of the American Association of Retired Persons, pictured left to right, are: Union County Freeholder Chairman Daniel P. Sullivan; Charles Grunder, Chapter President; Marion Connolly of Westfield, Volunteer Coordinator of Runnells projects; W.L. Seach of Elizabeth, chapter volunteer member; Patricia Scott of Union, Runnells’ Director of Activities Therapy, and Runnells resident Hildegard Gehr, modeling one of the hats.
Union County Rolling Out Computerized Machines By PAUL J. PEYTON
Specially Written for The Westfield Leader and The Times
Voting will enter the high tech world this November when voters in Westfield, Fanwood and Mountainside begin using the county’s new computerized and barrier-free machines. The county purchased 500 machines last year at a cost of $2.8 million through the approval of a bond referendum. The AVC machines, manufactured by Sequoia Pacific Voting Equipment, Inc. of Jamestown, New York, allow persons in wheelchairs to easily vote. Also, write-in votes will now be done electronically. In order to familiarize voters with these new machines, the Union County Board of Elections has announced that sample machines will be available during Westfield’s annual FestiFall street festival this Sunday, September 20. Dennis Kobitz, of the Board of Elections who is working with Westfield to
get the town familiar with the machines, said all voting districts in the town will receive the new machines. Voters will no longer pull a curtain or levers when voting. Instead, one just walks into the booth and pushes a button. The machines are also handicapped assessable. When the machines are turned off they will release a tape, similar to a supermarket receipt, and a computer disk. Mr. Kobitz noted that when popped into the computer, workers in the office of the County Clerk will quickly be able to tabulate the results. Under the old system, workers had to keystroke in results from around the county. While the system will not save much time in getting out election results in local races, they will speed up the process for tabulating county-wide and state races within the county. Currently one of the last counties to release election results, Union will now be one of the first under the new machines, Mr. Koblitz explained. The machines are currently in use in Ocean, Somerset and Bergen Counties.
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Union County Clerk Elected President of Political Caucus
Union County Clerk Joanne Rajoppi recently was elected to serve as President of the New Jersey Women’s Political Caucus at the group’s annual conference. The WPC-NJ is a bi-partisan organization dedicated to increasing women’s participation in the political process through election and appointment to local, county, state and national office. Previously, Ms. Rajoppi served as the statewide organization’s First and Second Vice Presidents. She is a member of WPC National Steering Committee, the national parent organization of the state caucus based in Washington, D.C. Ms. Rajoppi is the 1997 recipient of the Mary Philbrook Award from the WPC-NJ, a prestigious award given to a woman who is a role model. She also has served as President of the Union County Caucus. “I am honored that the state membership,” Ms. Rajoppi said, “has endorsed my candidacy as President.”
She said her plans for the organization include an aggressive outreach program to assist women in training for elective and appointive office. “With skills and techniques, greater numbers of women will succeed in the political arena,” she said. Previously, Ms. Rajoppi served as Mayor of Springfield, Union County Freeholder Chairwoman, Union County Register of Deeds and Mortgages and New Jersey Assistant Secretary of State. She was elected as Union County Clerk in 1995. She is also an adjunct lecturer at Rutgers University in the Political Science Department. Other officers elected to the Women’s Political Caucus of NJ for the coming year are Marie Flynn of Bernardsville, First Vice President; Marianne McConnell of Ironia, Second Vice President; Gilda Morales of Piscataway, Secretary; Claudine Leone of Mt. Laurel, Treasurer; Linda Anselmini of Princeton, Political Action Committee Chairwoman, and Christine Stearns of Lambertville, Political Action Committee Treasurer.