ANDOVER TOWNSHIP, NJ - Over 260 supporters attended the fundraiser last night to benefit the campaign for Alicia Ferrante, one of the two candidates running for Sussex County Surrogate.
The fundraiser took place at the Andover Township Barn, and was a Beefsteak event, catered by the Brownstone, with music provided by KDK Entertainment.
Local dignitaries in attendance included: former Sussex County Freeholder Glen Vetrano, Sussex County Freeholders Richard Vohden, Dennis Mudrick, and George Graham, Stanhope Borough Mayor Rosemarie Maio, Stanhope Borough Councilman James Benson, Frankford Township Committee Member and Sussex County Freeholder Candidate Gary Larson, Stillwater Township Committee Member Lisa Chammings, Fredon Township Committeeman Doug White, Hampton Township Committee Member Jim Dooley, and Byram Township Councilman Carlos Luaces.
Event sponsors were: Steven and Tracey Woodhead, James and Nancy Caragher, David Ferrante, David and Joelle Brownlee, Tim and Kelly Straway, Peter and Tracy Klimek, Glen Vetrano, IBEW Local 102 PAC, Sussex County PBA Local 138, Tri-State Rentals, DiGeronimo and Sons, Exit Towne and Country Realty, Michael and Jacquie Nunn, and Group Victory, LLC.
"Momentum is building in this campaign," said Vetrano, an advocate for Ferrante.
Vetrano explained that at their last fundraiser held at the Lamp Post Inn in Vernon, only 60 people were expected, and 90 showed instead.
History repeated itself with the greater than expected crowd, with people who showed to attend the event, which was filled to capacity, with some showing at the door, and being turned away.
"This campaign was very fortunate to draw the number one position on the ballot," Vetrano added.
He said Ferrante differs as a candidate because she is qualified, has experience in the field, and has a compassionate demeanor.
Vetrano cautioned the event attendees the time before the upcoming primary may grow contentious, with some animosity developing.
"I can assure you from this [Ferrante's] campaign it [animosity] won't take place," Vetrano said.
In terms of the election, Vetrano said, "There's only a group of people that allows you to fill this position, and it's the people of Sussex County."
Vetrano asked all in attendance to follow the Rule of 10, in asking family, friends, and neighbors to vote.
"Get your family, friends, and neighbors to vote for Alicia Ferrante, and we will win the election," said Vetrano.
Ferrante took the microphone, and recounted a story of a woman she met recently, who suffered through a lifetime of extraordinary circumstances, in which she could have been classified a victim, but refused to.
"She told me, 'no one in this world is entitled to anything,'" Ferrante said.
Ferrante compared the story to her take on holding office, that no one is entitled to hold a political office.
"The office of surrogate is completely different, it provides a service," Ferrante said.
Ferrante's background reflects 16 years in the field of law, with a concentration on wills, powers of attorney, adoptions, and guardianship matters. She said she has especially worked on guardianship cases, ranging from aiding those with mental illnesses to appointing guardians for the elderly. Ferrante also explained one of 88 children now contend with autism, and, when they turn 18, will require a guardian.
Ferrante said the focus should be on Sussex County, and said, "It's not about rubbing elbows with the Governor, and who's driving to Trenton every day."
"The opposition is saying you don't have to be an attorney," Ferrante said, then asked, "When you have a choice, doesn't it make sense to put that person [who is qualified] in office?"
"I just need everyone to get out on June 4," Ferrante said.
Ferrante reiterated she does not have a political machine behind her, and said, "I don't need that, I have your support. This doesn't have to be politics as usual."
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