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Provisional Ballots Counted, Alex Torpey Wins by 14 Votes

In a close race, Torpey becomes Village President

Alex Torpey is the new Village President, according to the County Clerk. He will be sworn in on Monday night at a Board of Trustees meeting.

Provisional ballots were opened, counted and verified on Thursday afternoon. The final tally of votes cast in the May 2011 Village President race is: 

Alex Torpey: 708

Janine Bauer: 694 

"I'm really excited, and incredibly humbled, to have the opportunity to help direct the future of my hometown and I really have to thank all of the volunteers and my family, friends, and supporters for working so hard to make this happen," said Torpey on Wednesday.  "I can't wait to continue my service to our community as Village President."

Torpey took the majority of votes cast in South Orange on Tuesday, as residents went to the polls to choose a new Village President. Torpey received 706 votes to Janine Bauer’s 693 votes, according to unofficial results from the Essex County clerk. Just 13 votes separated the candidates’ results at that point. With provisional ballots counted, 14 votes separate the candidates' totals. 

Bauer currently holds a seat on the Board of Trustees. Current Village President Douglas Newman chose not to run for re-election; Monday was his final board of trustees meeting.

Deborah Davis Ford, Howard Levison, and Mark Rosner, incumbents who ran uncontested races on the same Pure Progress slate as Bauer, were re-elected for four-year terms. Davis Ford received 894 votes; Levison received 879 votes; Rosner received 863 votes. A total of 81 “write in” votes were cast, as well.

The race was tight; the unofficial totals had each candidate in the lead a number of times, as districts reported their results after polls closed in South Orange at 8 p.m.  The total votes cast for Village President were 1402, including mail-in ballots and three “write in” votes, and in addition to the six provisional ballots.

 Full results from the Essex County clerk for this and other elections are here

stephen bienko May 11, 2011 at 11:26 AM
This is exciting and monumental in the life of a young 23 year old Torpey. Just his passion and desire will go a long way. He also seems willing to learn and adabt. I like that
Brad May 11, 2011 at 12:52 PM
Presiding over a village with an approximate 32 million 2011 budget is not the place for “learning and adapting” seeking the highest office with no or only minor experience oppose to learning the ropes by perhaps serving in a more collaborative trustee position first shows arrogance in my book. To lead you need the trust of others, to gain that trust you need respect, to earn respect you need the experience and willingness to work side by side with others for the common goal.
Dave Hartman May 11, 2011 at 02:49 PM
Brad, if you're so worried about the 23-year-old you should have a) run yourself or b) mobilized voters for another candidate. As less than 10% of the town voted in this election I can assume you weren't concerned enough to do take advantage of option B. It's easy to be critical of the election results but much harder to be active in the political process, as Mr. Torpey clearly was. Further, I've seen Alex at dozens of obscure town meetings that most citizens don't bother attending and most likely don't know exist. Rather than bash your new village president why not give him a phone call to congratulate him and then let him know what issues you have with the town and what you believe the best remedies are. Or you could continue being a "message board activist" (term is hereby copyrighted) and contribute nothing to your community.
Joanne Douds May 12, 2011 at 03:39 PM
Do not underestimate the power of a brilliant 23 year old graduate from Hampshire College. Westfield had a village president for over 30 years that was outvoted by a 25 year old single lawyer. What you see in Westfield today, was the result of his work. Mr. Torpey comes with more knowledge and experience that you think. His work at Hampshire College is impressive, he made a lasting mark on that town as a college student. How many college students do that? This is his town he has obvious passion and vision for. Experience is not everything...results speak. We cheer him on.
Edie Sachs May 13, 2011 at 01:35 AM
I think the low voter turnout is absolutely disgraceful. About 1400 votes cast for village president. According to the 2000 census (2010 figures are not available yet for NJ), South Orange had nearly 17,000 people, and about 70% of those, or approximately 12,000, were of voting age. Disgraceful. Did people just assume that Janine would just waltz right into office as VP, so it wasn't worth their time to show up to vote? And then Torpey wins by 13(!!) votes? How is it possible to feel that our village government is truly representative if so few people apparently care who sits in Village Hall? Let this be a lesson to everyone, no matter who you would or wouldn't have supported, that every single vote counts and that voting is a duty as well as a right.
Jeffrey Bennett May 13, 2011 at 01:47 PM
Joanne, I'd be very interested in hearing more about Westfield's young mayor and how he or she made Westfield the extremely well-functioning, flourishing community that it is. (No sarcasm intended. I am totally sincere in my comments on Westfield. I have nothing against Alex Torpey at all.)
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