As a parent and husband, Paul Santangelo knows that family is worth the sacrifices and decisions one makes. He knows that parents set the groundwork for the path of leadership that children eventually take their journeys on in life.
Paul has lived in Roselle Park for the last 16 years with his wife, Gina who has been a Roselle Park resident for 28 years, and their three children. This year he saw available seats on the Board Of Education (BOE) as a way to provide additional support on the ground beneath his – and other Roselle Park residents’ – children to give them that much more structure on their road to success. He talked about it with his wife and decided to run a write-in campaign for the BOE.
After graduating Union Township High School in 1999 and then Kean University with a B.S. in Management Science, Paul decided to work in Sales and Marketing. He started his career with Wachovia Bank before it was Wells Fargo as a Series 6, 63 Certified Financial Specialist. He has also worked in Information Services for Thomson Reuters and LexisNexis.
Paul coached his oldest daughter, now 20, in her Youth Softball & Basketball teams for approximately a decade and is involved with numerous town activities over the years. He is a member of the Roselle Park Knights of Columbus as well as a Republican Committeeman for the first ward.
In presenting his reasons for wanting to run this year, Paul said that his two youngest – ages four and two – who will soon be entering the Roselle Park School District along with his stepdaughter who graduated from Roselle Park High School and now attends Fairleigh Dickinson University were the main reason. He stated, “I want to make an impact on the policy that drives their education.”
He has also witnessed first-hand how involvement with school boards improved the quality of education and the lives of two family members who are mentally disabled.
Lastly, utilizing his experience in the business world and education in Management Science, Paul says he understands the hardships and dislocations that New Jersey’s budget crisis has created for children and would like to help offer ideas to solve those issues.
“I love the Borough of Roselle Park and believe that it has the potential to be a leader in our County and our State,” Paul expressed, “That path to leadership starts with our children and our school systems. I’d like to do my part.”
If elected to the school board, Paul would help with district policies and the budget. He said, “I would like to improve the policies that affect the quality of education and learning environment in a positive way for Roselle Park youth.”
He feels that by improving transparency, practicing sound fiscal decision-making, and working collaboratively with fellow board members, the sky is the limit for the Roselle Park School District.
Paul stated that he does not expect to necessarily start out by making changes if elected. He plans to listen to parents’ concerns while simultaneously evaluating administrative goals. He wants to work collaboratively with other board members to identify inefficiencies, waste, and outdated policies that can be improved. He remarked, “The Roselle Park Board of Education and School Administration do many things the right way and should be applauded for their efforts in guiding our children to successful futures.”
Thinking about what he sees as positives in the district, Paul said that there are too many to mention. He highlighted, “If I had to choose, I would say Roselle Park offers a very diverse and modern curriculum. I would like to help expand upon that and offer my expertise from the business world.”
Paul knows that the majority of property taxes go to education in Roselle Park and addresses that, having said, “I would like to focus on behaviors and policies that can help stabilize or drive down costs while keeping the quality and experience of education unaffected. To this effect, I believe the best way to achieve that is through adopting innovative solutions that drive efficiencies. For instance, what shared service models can we implement that can reduce duplicative or wasteful operations? Are we using modern technology in the classroom to best prepare our teachers and students? Are we creating partnerships with local businesses and associations to benefit students, teachers, and communities? These are the kinds of initiatives I would like to explore if given the opportunity.”
As for PILOT, a major topic of discussion recently with the development of residential complexes, Paul admits he is a bit concerned. He understands and commends the mayor & council for the redevelopment projects in the works, and in the planning stages, Still, he commented, “I am nervous about the financial and population pressures that added residential development [could] cause on the school district.”
He supports the idea of having the municipality meets with the school board to explore ways to prevent negatively impacting the school budget and classrooms.
In closing, Paul wanted to relay to the community, “My wife Gina and I have lived in Roselle Park for many years. I have witnessed my daughter Caitlin develop into a thoughtful, intelligent, and caring individual with a direction and purpose in life. None of that would have been possible for her without the wonderful teachers, administration, and community that helped her achieve her goals. I’d now like to do my part in helping other children in our community have a similar experience. If the residents of Roselle Park see fit to elect me, I will do my best to enact policies that improve their children’s education, safeguard our budget, and implement new innovative initiatives that will help put Roselle Park Schools back in a position of success.”
Anyone requesting more information can reach out to Paul Santangelo by phone at (908) 531-7332, e-mail (psantangelo99[@]gmail.com), and Facebook (link).
Election day is Tuesday, November 6th.