Editor’s Note

Since October 7th, things have been different. Though there is a war taking place in the Middle East, it is having a major impact on many right here in the greater Princeton area. Over the past month+, there have been local gatherings of grief and solidarity with Israel, Pro-Palestinian rallies, teach-ins, and vigils to bring home the hostages. Very little has been covered by our local media, so we felt compelled to do so.

In this issue, Understanding & Supporting Others During This Trying Time, Princeton Perspectives aims to take a closer look at why a war in Israel and Gaza is affecting people so closely here.

Though our local media is covering little, mainstream media is covering this issue non-stop. From national online publications to cable news channels, network news and social media, people are learning about the area for the first time and getting updates on what is happening in live time. Where are you getting your knowledge? We asked Princeton University students to share how they stay in-the-know in this month’s Pulse of Princeton, and you may be interested to hear what they have to say.

If you’re paying attention, you have either seen first-hand or heard about the rise in antisemitism and Islamophobia this past month. Both are forms of hate, brewing from a war between mostly Jews and Muslims. But the hate is coming from people of all religions, races and nations. Antisemitism, in particular, is seeing the highest rise around the world of our lifetimes, reminiscent of that felt in the 1930s and ‘40s. It’s building fear in the Jewish people that the world is on the brink of another Holocaust. The Rise in Jew-Hatred is Felt Near and Far examines what antisemitism is, how it has grown and what is happening locally to fuel it and counter it.

One of the ways to eliminate hate is to learn about history, about people and the lives they’ve lived. But how does one learn this? In the article A Mix of Local Education and Transglobal Information Feed Today’s Youth we examine what NJ content students learn in school, at home and on social media and whether or not it prepares them to engage in global conversations like this.

For many, the emotional and mental toll of the Israel-Hamas War is having a major psychological impact. Use an Open Heart to Get Through Today’s Tragedies, is a local psychologist’s vantage point, insight that might allow you to see things a little differently and to feel a little bit better.

Finding compassion, as is recommended in the article above, is one way to engage in conversation and to move forward while the war is going on and after. It can be a difficult thing to find, especially with someone who comes from a different social identity group than you do. But that also might be the key. In Allyship: A Way to Advocate and Commiserate with Others, we learn from experiences locals have engaged in to open our eyes and heart, to move forward.

We are also looking back, providing updates on stories we have covered in the past. This month’s Perspectives Revisited touches on municipal and school information that you will want to stay up on.

We aimed to bring you lots of information in this issue, some which is harder to read and some which can give you hope. Until next month, keep leaning on those you love.

Pulse of Princeton: Where do PU students get their news about the war?

The Rise in Jew-Hatred is Felt Near and Far

Symbol for a national campaign designed to raise awareness about antisemitism and hatred against Jews

Antisemitism has long been the most-reported religious hate crime. Since the October 7th Israeli massacre by Hamas it has skyrocketed, with downtowns, college campuses and other areas being site to some of the most blatant and overt acts of our time, creating a fear of another Holocaust to come.

In October, the FBI released its 2022 Hate Crimes Statistics Report, which showed more than half of all religion-based crimes in the U.S. are anti-Jewish. Additionally for 2022, the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) tabulated a 36% increase in antisemitic acts over what it had found in 2021, which at that point was the highest number recorded since the organization began tracking incidents in 1979. After California, New Jersey had the most reported antisemitic incidents across the U.S. in 2019, the most in 2020 & 2021 and the 2nd most in 2022. Since the October 7th attacks, the spike has been monumental, surpassing all reports in recent decades.

“This is the most heightened antisemitism, unprecedented in our lifetimes,” states Brandi Katz Rubin, ADL Senior Associate Regional Director for NY/NJ. “We’re seeing Jew hate, not just anti-Israel hate at this point, which has shifted in the past weeks. Protests or vandalism is not just death to Israel but death to Jews, it’s F&%* Jews. At Rutgers University, someone recently posted on the school’s YikYak channel a murderous threat to an Israeli fraternity member. Police were able to track them down and there was an arrest.”


The working definition of antisemitism from the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance, widely accepted internationally, is “a certain perception of Jews, which may be expressed as hatred toward Jews. Rhetorical and physical manifestations of antisemitism are directed toward Jewish or non-Jewish individuals and/or their property, toward Jewish community institutions and religious facilities.”

At just 2% of the U.S. population, Jews have become an increased target in the United States. From Oct. 7th– Nov. 7th there were 832 incidents of assault, vandalism and harassment that have been vetted and confirmed by the ADL, a 316% increase as compared to this period last year (when there was already heightened antisemitism due to comments made by Ye). Over the weekend, a grenade (later found to be inert) was spotted at Holocaust Memorial Park in Brooklyn, and what turned out to be a phony 9-1-1 call claiming pipe bombs were left inside one of New York City’s biggest synagogues had many on edge. New York and New Jersey officials are on alert.


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“The New Jersey Attorney General has spoken very strongly, and Governor Murphy has spoken very strongly and unequivocally in support of Israel’s right to defend itself and condemning terrorism,” Rubin states. They have also spoken out against hate and antisemitism. And while that helps, she says other things are fueling the fire. “Reporting on unverified information in the media we are seeing has real consequences in the real world. It is leading to antisemitic hatred and violence.”


Anti-Jewish crimes in New York City have tripled since Oct. 7th. Overall, in the NY/NJ region, as of Nov. 1st there was more than a 100% increase in incidents reported to the ADL compared to this time last year, a number that is expected to have grown even larger by now. For 2023, the ADL heatmap (which has not been updated with all recent reports) shows antisemitic acts and white supremacist events have been reported nearby in Princeton, Hamilton, Plainsboro, Ewing and New Brunswick. An additional map from the ADL shows East Windsor was the site of recent antisemitic harassment as well. Princeton Police Department says there has not been anything of this nature filed directly to them recently. Reported means that someone either filed a police report or submitted the details to the ADL directly, incidents which are then vetted. Many acts of Jew hatred are not even reported, do not rise to the level of a crime or do not qualify as a registered incident. Therefore, the numbers are said to be only a portion of what is taking place.

Though not a rampant hotbed, Princeton has had its share of strong antisemitic acts over the years. For example, in 2016, Princeton High School students were found to be playing “Jews vs. Nazis” beer pong. In 2017, a swastika was put into a document shared across all 8th graders and staff at the Princeton Middle School. 2021 saw a Pro-Palestinian rally turn into a march down Nassau Street with people holding signs that included words like “Hitler Should Have Finished the Job.” And earlier this year, a Princeton Middle School student shouted plans to shoot up a Bar Mitzvah, in addition a white supremacist group marched through town. Antisemitic acts are sometimes very intentional and other times done out of a lack of understanding. A new study, released this week by the ADL, finds that 71% of Americans feel Jew-hatred is a major problem in the U.S. American Jewish Committee (AJC) did a survey last year and found 31% of Americans were not even familiar with the term antisemitism.

“It is a hatred of Jews and a hatred of Zionism, I believe they go hand in hand. The expressions thereof, in word and deed, in ways that are either aggressive or passive. There are subtle forms of antisemitism that usually come out in someone’s language that they use,” notes Rabbi Andi Merow, of The Jewish Center. “The quiet words, antisemitic comments, contribute to people feeling not safe and othered, meaning your group is not mainstream and there’s something wrong with you.”

Locally, there has been some escalation this past month, but it doesn’t appear to be as heightened as seen elsewhere. On Route 18, near the Rutgers campus, a mix of Nazi ideology and Israeli hatred was drawn on the ground – a Nazi flag with a swastika in the middle coupled with graffiti that said F&%* Israel and death to the IDF. A local synagogue in Monroe was spraypainted with antisemitic graffiti last week. Local high school students have also seen an uptick in hurtful and harmful comments and actions. One area student was repeatedly asked by another what their number was, while the student rolled up their sleeve and pointed to the forearm – a reference to the numbers branded into the arms of those at concentration camps during the Holocaust. Another local student has had “dog whistle” shouted repeatedly, a term that appears to mean nothing but in fact is a way to communicate a noxious view some recognize without outright saying it for all to hear.

On October 28th and November 4th, Pro-Palestinian rallies were held along areas of Nassau Street in Princeton. The rallies themselves were not considered antisemitic. However, when antisemitic terms or tropes were displayed on signs or shouted from the crowd, messages of Jew hatred were spread. AJC has recently explained “when protesters chant ‘From the River to the Sea,’ they are rejecting Israel’s right to exist, by indicating that the entire land of Israel should be freed from Jews.” The ADL also considers this chant to be antisemitic, stating on its website “it is fundamentally a call for a Palestinian state extending from the Jordan River to the Mediterranean Sea, territory that includes the State of Israel, which would mean the dismantling of the Jewish state. It is an antisemitic charge denying the Jewish right to self-determination, including through the removal of Jews from their ancestral homeland.” Additionally, signs supporting the Hamas attack and people screaming directly at locals that they have “blood on their hands” caused concern and fear to some witnessing the rally.


Similar chants and signage have also been seen over the past month across the campus of Princeton University (PU), one of many institutions of higher education that has been noted in national media for antisemitic incidents on campus. Rutgers University has also been the site of several targeted and covert attacks. Since Oct. 7th, at least 200 of the 653 anti-Israel rallies held nationwide have included support for Hamas and/or violence against Jews in Israel – 124 of those took place on college campuses. Concerned about threats and danger to the students, staff and faculty on these campuses, on November 2nd the U.S. House of Representatives overwhelmingly passed a resolution “condemning the support of Hamas, Hezbollah, and other terrorist organizations at institutions of higher education, which may lead to the creation of a hostile environment for Jewish students, faculty, and staff.” Congresswoman Bonnie Watson Coleman, who represents Princeton, voted against this bill.

PU has faced heat in the past, including at the start of this school year for a book on a course reading list strongly criticized as antisemitic, and officials recognize things have gotten even more heated this past month.

“The University takes antisemitism and other forms of bias seriously. As on many campuses, Princeton has seen a heightened number of concerning incidents, interpersonal conflicts, and demonstrations since October 7. The University is working to respond to these painful, problematic situations and support the wellbeing of the campus community while maintaining the right of individuals to engage in protected speech,” shares Michael Hotchkiss, Princeton University Assistant VP for Communications. He further spoke of the issue many are discussing, which is where the line is drawn between free speech and hate speech. A recent PU walkout organized by Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP), a group with chapters on over 200 campuses that has explicitly expressed support for Hamas or terrorism, included chants of “Long live the Intifada (a reference to the days of suicide bombers and mass shootings on the streets of Israel). “As President Eisgruber has written, ‘The freedom of speech allows not only for genteel conversation but also for harsh language, impassioned argument, and provocative rhetoric. Of course, it also permits all of us to criticize statements that we find offensive or irresponsible, even if that speech is fully protected from punishment or discipline.’”

Around the country, many Jewish students are reporting they do not feel safe amidst the changing climates on college campuses. Despite what is happening at PU, the Rabbi for the on-campus Jewish organization, Hillel, says the students are getting through this.

“There have, indeed, been pro-Palestinian events on Campus, and at one event, participants chanted ‘From the River to the Sea’ and ‘Intifada’. Many in the Jewish community hear these chants not as a call for peaceful Palestinian resistance to oppression or support for a Palestinian state, but as an antisemitic wish for the obliteration of the Jewish State, and as a call to violence and worse against Jews,” explains Rabbi Gil Steinlauf, Executive Director and Jewish Chaplain Center for Jewish Life – Princeton Hillel. “In the face of these challenges, however, our Jewish students are, across the board, undaunted and unafraid on campus. They are surrounded by love and support not just at the Center for Jewish Life, Princeton Hillel, but by so many among their non-Jewish peers and in the university leadership who have expressed their care, compassion, and support for the Jewish people on campus. Our students walk around campus proudly as Jews, and many are more than willing to engage their peers in talking about Israel, and to help them to understand the complexities of the situation, many of which are lost in the news reports and in social media these days.”


There is also a sense of comfort and safety for other Jews in the community when people speak out against hate. In a statement at their October 23rd meeting, Princeton Council and Mayor made a statement about the Israel-Hamas war which included “we reaffirm our unwavering commitment to stand against antisemitism…” This statement was not made in a vacuum, according to Rabbi Merow, who says the mayor’s office, the Princeton Police department, local Presbyterian pastors and local Black ministers have reached out. Two other local ministers joined The Jewish Center congregation for services this past weekend.

“The antidote of antisemitism is the love and care the Jewish community has received from the police dept and the mayor’s office. I have felt they have gone out of their way to try and support us,” Merow shares.

By standing up to hate, you too, can show your support. If you have been the victim of or witnessed an antisemitic incident, you can report it through the ADL Incident Portal at adl.org/report. They should also be reported to the Princeton Police Department.

A Mix of Local Education and Transglobal Information Feed Today’s Youth

Princeton Public Schools has a mission “to prepare all of our students to lead lives of joy and purpose as knowledgeable, creative and compassionate citizens of a global society.” The Hun School of Princeton “empowers each student to thrive in a diverse and ever-changing world…” and Princeton Day School’s philosophy is to “seek diversity of cultures, views and talents to promote the intellectual growth and moral development of our students.” As the Israel-Hamas War wages on, do teenagers and young adults find their educations have prepared them for the global conversations and situations they now find themselves in?

“I think my school does a decent job in preparing us for global conversations, but it also depends on the topic,” shares Princeton High School Senior, Maiyin H. “The Israel-Hamas War is one of those topics where teachers are treading very lightly because of how polarizing and contentious different views can be. I, for one, do not feel comfortable expressing a different view or asking a question that may not be ‘PC.’ As someone who is not Jewish or of Middle Eastern descent, I often feel like I don’t have the right to express an opinion because I ‘don’t have any skin in the game.’ Talking about the war, which is complicated and goes back thousands of years, is difficult and I understand that, but oversimplifying the history is not the answer either.”

What does NJ do to prepare today’s teens and young adults to engage in conversations about global situations? The NJ Department of Education’s mission states “Social studies education provides learners with the knowledge, skills, attitudes, and perspectives needed to become active, informed, and contributing members of local, state, national, and global communities.” To do so, there are requirements to learn world history/global studies in both middle and high school. To graduate, 15 credits of social studies are required, including 5 credits of World History.

“I’ve taken history classes that I feel have prepared me and given me confidence to engage in discussions. Wars over land and religion have been going on in our world for centuries,” says PHS Senior Charlie Ross.

New Jersey education law also stipulates that “every board of education shall include instruction on the Holocaust and genocides in an appropriate place in the curriculum of all elementary and secondary school pupils.”


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Over the past several years, Princeton Public Schools has added mandatory racial literacy education to the curriculum which the website states “has a foundation in pedagogies developed to advance social justice, cultural responsiveness, and multiculturalism.” Though included, teaching about antisemitism and Islamophobia have not been a major focus of this curriculum to date. Overall, at schools in Princeton and elsewhere, the goal of all of this education remains to develop informed citizens about the world, its history, and its citizens.

“As for curriculum, the history of Israel is not something really focused on in most NJ state educations. World History is mostly history of the western world – the Romans, Greeks, Renaissance. And most of high school education is U.S. history,” explains Sara Fernandez, who recently retired as a Social Studies teacher at Cranbury School after 26 years of teaching. “Israel and the Palestinians is maybe taught in detail in elective classes, but probably not in regular mainstream classes.”

In recent weeks, some teachers have chosen to speak in their classrooms about what is happening across the world (at varying degrees of success), while others have not. Some independent schools, like Princeton Day School, have taken the initiative to bring in an expert on the Middle East in an effort to respond to questions about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. When it comes to Holocaust and genocide, though the requirement is fulfilled differently at each district and independent schools are not bound to such state requirements, the curriculums aim to help students learn about some of history’s mistakes. With the Israel-Hamas War leading some around the world to include mentions of genocide and reignite Nazi propaganda, that education can be relevant and important. In Princeton, this education had fallen out of the middle school curriculum for several years but is said to be back through 7th grade English and 8th grade Civics classes. In the high school, it mainly comes through the sophomore English course and is included in various U.S. and World History curriculums. There has been a year-long audit underway to determine what and how the information is being relayed.

“We read Anne Frank’s The Diary of a Young Girl in school and had a Holocaust survivor give a talk to students. We learned about antisemitism. But we mostly learned it as a historical event tied to WWII and the Nazis. I was shocked to see this genocidal hatred openly displayed in broad daylight,” expresses Sarah Chen, a PHS sophomore.

It might be unreasonable to expect that schools can fully educate students on all they need to know about this specific issue, since Israelis and the Palestinians have a complicated past. Conversations about the Israel-Hamas war and the ensuing reactions around the world are encumbered by the nuances of the history of the region and the fact that religion is involved. For many, the war is not just something 5,700 miles away. Locally, it has ignited academia, led to rallies, vigils, and taken over news channels and social media feeds. College students are confronted with what is happening on a regular basis. There are also courses, more directly aimed at public policy, global affairs, the Middle East and more where the topic is a natural part of the discussion there. If not in these particular classes, what kind of background do students get to prepare them for such conversations?

“Patience, empathy, understanding and listening skills are built every day in our class so when we get to these conversations you have a community that is patient and understanding,” Fernandez shares. “You have to talk to people you don’t always agree with.”

Beyond the classrooms and campuses, teens and young adults today have at their fingertips access to information that feeds their minds and opinions. Depending who you follow on social media, what you read and watch on the internet, can have a large impact on the knowledge you hold and on how you engage on this issue. When it comes to using it as a tool for education, that is where some additional education might be needed.

“Social media can be positive and negative. When the Ukranian war broke out, my students learned so much. That part of the world was something they hadn’t been exposed to much. Some Tik Tok videos were of reporters posting and they were right and good. So, that’s a medium children love,” Fernandez notes. “But at the same time, social media is also filled with the worst of the worse students are finding too. When they hear the word Israel, it’s just a tiny country in the middle of nowhere, and unless you’re Jewish or Arabic or have origins from that part of the world, most kids don’t care. They have no context and are being bombarded with images.”

Recognizing the significant role it has on them, in July, NJ Governor Phil Murphy established a commission to study the effects of social media on adolescents. The results will come out long after the impacts are made regarding today’s war and possibly even tomorrow’s troubles.

“I get most of my education on these issues through social media,” Ross admits. Maiyin H. acknowledges the same. “I definitely get most of my education from social media. On the one hand, this has afforded me so many different views and perspectives. On the other hand, social media is strife with fake news and people who lean strongly one way or the other, which can influence how I think.”

Education, therefore, must include a learning of historical realities and deciphering fact from fiction. Beyond the classroom and social media, families impact a young person’s perspective as well. Experts suggest when confronted with questions, to lean on empathy. If a child pushes further, lay out the facts and let them devise their conclusion.

Editor’s Note

Every October Princeton Perspectives puts out an issue all about the elections, to help every local voter be educated and informed. This month is no different, as we’ve gathered all the details on when and where to vote, how to vote, what’s being voted on and more. As we put the final touches on this issue, our hearts go out to the Israeli, American and other victims of Hamas’ terrorist acts. A war has been unleashed that will sadly lead to more injuries and deaths on both sides. Our thoughts and prayers are with everyone in our community and abroad that are suffering.

Here in New Jersey, the democratic election process moves forward, allowing people to have say in what happens next. Ballots have arrived in mailboxes if you Vote By Mail. Sample Ballots are online. There may be offices up for contest and candidates you know nothing about. It’s all here in Elections 2023 – Details on Voting, Candidates & More!, the only local publication where you will find it all.

What is driving you to vote? We asked local residents what issue is top of mind as they prepare for election day. This month’s Pulse of Princeton video shares their concerns.

Though the basic concept of casting one’s vote is old, every year there are new elements that come into play. The article The General Election: Who’s Running? What’s New? What’s at Stake? provides insight into every political candidate on the ballot, explains some new things to be aware of before you vote and lets you know the dates and locations where you can drop a ballot or vote in person.

Also year’s election includes decisions that greatly effect Princeton’s schools. The article What is the PPS Referendum and Who are the Board Candidates? shares insight into the two incumbents and three challengers running, an explanation of the referendum and more.

Imagine if you sat down and had coffee with someone with opposing political views. Disagreement, judgements and strong opinions lead many to avoid it. How, then, do we learn from one another and expand our minds? This month, Princeton Perspectives is offering you a chance to hear what the other side wants to share with you, without anyone else knowing and without anyone else judging. In two articles, The Importance of Voting in November, A Perspective From Local Democrats and The Importance of Voting in November, A Perspective From a Local Republican individual viewpoints are shared that you can consider.

And don’t skip past Perspectives Revisited, because there is an important update on cellular service around Princeton you just might want to know! We also share Princeton Public School’s newly released proposal to help alleviate the elementary school enrollment situation. Read on to find out!

We hope you find this issue informational and helpful as you fill in your Vote By Mail ballot or head to the polls. Remember, the decisions made this November have the greatest impact because you are voting for the positions that control your property tax bill the most!

We hope you have a very Happy Halloween and we’ll see you again after the election!

Pulse of Princeton: What issue is most important to you as you prepare to vote?

The General Election: Who’s Running? What’s New? What’s at Stake?

November 7th is fast approaching. It’s the day of the general election. Though they’ve started debating, there are no presidential candidates to vote for, no Congress or Senate votes to post. So, why turn out?

The elections for 2023 will decide who your elected state Senate and Assembly officials are, the people who create and pass the laws of New Jersey. The new leader of Mercer County will be elected, Sheriff will be chosen, and your County Commissioners – those in charge of decisions that control 28% of your annual tax bill. Council candidates, whose budgeting defines 21% of your tax bill, will be elected. The Board of Education, who approves the Princeton Public Schools (PPS) budget which determines 49% of your tax bill, has three seats up for grabs. And lastly, there is also a bond proposal question, which would authorize a new PPS referendum. It’s safe to say that your wallet and your daily life are well controlled by those that are to be elected this November.


(As seen on the sample Election Day ballot on MercerCounty.org)

Every year Princeton Perspectives provides you with all you need to know to make informed decisions at the polls, and this year is no different. What has been unique is that in the June primary, every political candidate ran unopposed. So, if you combine the two dominant parties, in this general election, there are essentially the same candidates – with two additional contenders not included in the primary because they are neither running on the Democratic nor Republican ticket. To educate yourself about the races that are taking place and what each candidate stands for, simply click the + next to the elected office listed below and read the dropdown.


This year in Princeton, there are 2 Democratic incumbents up for re-election. No Republicans or other party candidates are in the race, their offices are considered uncontested – your vote simply shows that you support them. This position is for a three-year term.

David Cohen (D) is an incumbent looking to serve his third term on Princeton Council. Throughout his terms, he has been involved in several initiatives he wants to continue to see through. The new Master Plan, expected to be adopted by end of year, is something he looks forward to working with as a senior member of the Planning Committee. Stormwater management is another key issue for Cohen, which is in the midst of a feasibility study he hopes can help.

In addition, Cohen is hoping Princeton will adopt a Vision Zero Action Plan, something he’s been working on intended to create safer passageway for pedestrians and bikers. Lastly, he’d like to see the complete consolidation between the township and borough policies with unified zoning ordinances.

Leticia H Fraga (D) is also running for her third term on Princeton Council. She aims to continue her efforts of making policy decisions through an equity lens, seeking to improve the quality of life for all of Princeton’s residents.

Fraga believes Princeton is a flourishing community, and hopes to continue her efforts with updating infrastructure, partnering with businesses and the community, and ensuring all basic needs are accessible to vulnerable populations.


This office is a wide-open race, after 20 years under the leadership of the retiring County Executive. The leader of the county is responsible for setting the agenda and making appointments. County Executive is the supervisor, director and controller of all counties administrative departments. The decisions, guidance, operations and direction of county government lays on the shoulders of this leader. The candidates are running for a four-year term.

Dan Benson (D) is running for his first term as County Executive. He has served the area since 2001 when elected to Hamilton Council at age 25. Benson then served on the County Commissioners Board (called County Freeholders at the time) for three years and has now been in the NJ Assembly since 2011.

He says he is seeking the County Executive role because the county needs to better oversee its finances. He also has a clear message on how to work together with all municipalities to improve health, jobs, transportation and opportunity.

Lisa Richford (R) has represented people throughout Mercer County as an attorney for the past 31 years, and now hopes to represent the county as their next executive. The sitting Mercer County Republican Committee Chair feels there has been a diminished quality of life for many Mercer County residents, and she hopes to change that by ending 20 years of one-party rule at the county level, providing better budget transparency, and rebuilding voters confidence in the election and voting system.

Having lived in Mercer County for 45 years, Lisa was raised by her mother, a Ukrainian immigrant and father, a US Marine. She also has a son who recently graduated from Hamilton High West. Lisa currently serves as in-house counsel for a company seeking to find the cure for cancers exclusively affecting women.


The Mercer County Board of Commissioners, the legislative branch of county government, has two incumbent Democrats and 2 challenging Republicans vying for the 2 open seats, for a three-year term.

Lucylle Walter (D) is an incumbent who has served as a County Commissioner (once called Freeholder) since 1998. She is hoping to continue serving alongside her running mate John Cimino because she believes they’ll offer continuity and experience that is needed.

With a new County Executive next year, and three of the seven Commissioners having only one term under their belts, Walter says that she and Cimino’s experience can be of great assistance when formulating new ideas and policies, presenting those to the administration and working with the rest of county government.

John Cimino (D) is also an incumbent. He has served twice as Board President since he was first elected to this role in 2009.

Affordability is the reason Cimino wants to continue to serve. He describes that to mean an array of things, from quality of life to better roads, more opportunities in higher education as well as by having clean and safe parks. Cimino seeks to ensure the needs of all in Mercer County are met.

Joseph Stillwell, (R) longtime Hamilton resident, says he is seeking to become a County Commissioner to bring common sense into county government, with primary goals of restoring fiscal responsibility and trust as well as protecting the environment of Mercer County.

A recent graduate from Catholic University of America, Stillwell is taking his history degree to graduate school where he seeks to become a certified teacher in New Jersey. He will bring his experience with civic organizations Knights of Columbus and American Legion Jersey Boys State to this role.

Denise “Neicy” Turner (R), a graduate of Trenton Central High School, is a 20-year resident of the capital city, mother of two and a grandmother. She is running to unseat an incumbent so she can serve her community and county, aiming to make sure budgets are properly met and addressing the many issues that need a Commissioner’s focus.

Turner currently works as a Medical Security Officer at the Ann Klein Forensic Center in West Trenton and also owns Daycare Greenacres, LLC, a home daycare providing childcare to families.


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The Sheriff oversees a variety of units for the county including “Court Security, a Tactical Response Team, K-9 Unit, Civil Process, Detective Bureau/ Fugitive Unit, Community Education Programs, Inmate Transportation, participation in Federal, State, and Local Task Forces, Airport Security and more,” according to the website. The position is for a three-year term.

John “Jack” Kemler (D) is the incumbent and has served in this role since 2010. He has a 40-year career in law enforcement that began in the Trenton Police Department and transitioned into roles at the Mercer County Sheriff’s Office, ultimately as Sheriff.

Kemler is running for a fifth term as Sheriff to continue his service to the county. He feels his respected leadership style, hard and honorable work and extra efforts to be thoughtful and fair are what helps keep the communities safe.

Bryan “Bucky” Boccanfuso (R) is hoping to unseat Kemler in an effort to bring his experience of more than 25 years of law enforcement to the role of Sheriff. Commitment, accountability, honor and respect are the tenets by which he intends to run the office, one which he says will serve all residents, business owners and visitors.

Boccanfuso was born and raised in Mercer County, and wants to provide a positive work environment, working as a team to benefit both the department and the county. As a full-time Sheriff, he hopes to help Mercer County be a beacon of law enforcement leadership.

Drew Cifrodelli (Libertarian) is a local small business owner running for Mercer County Sheriff in the model of a “Constitutional Sheriff.” As Sheriff, he plans to uphold the inalienable rights of all Mercer County residents and protect citizens’ liberties against government overreach. He will do this in a non-partisan way, undoing the influence that any political party has on law enforcement.


At the state level, all 40 State Senate seats are up for election which leaves Princeton (part of the 16th Legislative District) voting for one, for a four-year term. The Senate works alongside the General Assembly as the legislative branch of NJ government, passing bills on policy, spending and taxes.

Andrew Zwicker (D) is fighting to keep the seat he earned 2 years ago when Senator Kip Bateman retired. He took that role after four years serving in the General Assembly. A scientist and educator at Princeton University’s Plasma Physics Laboratory, Zwicker says evidence must be the guiding force behind decision making. If you vote early, you can thank Zwicker for his role in making that happen in NJ.

Michael Pappas (R) is hoping to unseat Zwicker, whom he went up against in 2021. Pappas brings years of experience to the table, having served on Franklin Township Council, then as its Mayor, on the Somerset County Board of Freeholders and as a one-term U.S. Congressman for the 12th Congressional District (prior to Rush Holt and now Bonnie Watson Coleman).

Richard Byrne (Libertarian) is a retired electrical engineer, having worked at Bell Laboratories and Intel Corp. working in hardware and software design as well as management experience. A U.S. Army Vietnam Veteran, he is a volunteer advisor for American Corporate Partners, helping other veterans, transitioning military members and spouses with their careers. He also spent decades volunteering with the Hillsborough Rescue Squad. Byrne is a strong believer in upholding citizens’ Constitutional rights and liberties.


The 80-member Assembly is up for grabs in this race. For 16th Legislative District voters in Mercer County (Princeton voters), there are one incumbent and three challengers running. Voters will choose two, to serve a two-year term.

Roy Freiman (D) is running for his fourth term. A longtime central NJ resident, Freiman credits his past experience as an executive at Prudential Financial with helping him make smart financial choices for NJ. As Chairman of the New Jersey Assembly Agriculture and Food Security Committee, he has worked to preserve farms, enhance public parks and other outdoor spaces and also works to help eliminate obstacles for small business owners.

Mitchelle Drulis (D) has been involved in NJ politics since she became Legislative Aid to an Assemblyman 2000, now she wants to join the Assembly herself. Since then, she has served as Chief of Staff to another Assemblyman, then went onto help U.S. Congressman Tom Malinowski as Political Director during his candidacy then as his District Director during for the four years he served.

Through that role, Drulis learned to manage constituent services and secured millions in federal funding. As a small business owner, volunteering as class mom and at her church, she has learned skills she hopes to bring to the General Assembly.

Ross Traphagen (R) hopes to take his experience as a small business owner and two-time Councilman for the Town of Clinton and use it to work together to find common sense solutions with his peers in the Assembly.

Traphagen recalls that the support he gets from Republicans, Democrats and Unaffiliated voters has led him through two successful elections, and he hope to see that same support in this race. He lives with his wife in Clinton and hopes that for his family and others he can go to Trenton to help keep taxes and fees at a minimum, work to control overdevelopment and maintain New Jersey’s beautiful open space.

Grace Zhang (R) is seeking to join the General Assembly as a step to give back to New Jerseyans a little bit of what America has given her. She came here as a poor college student, seeking the American dream and she has found it by earning her master’s degree, becoming a certified public accountant, building her own consulting and accounting business and raising three children.

A resident of Princeton, Zhang hopes to help other small business owners through lower taxes and more incentives. She has been an advocate and volunteer at her children’s schools and hopes to build on that with educational opportunities for all. By continuing to support community activities, festivals and more she hopes to build stability and economic success across NJ.

(Note: All information on the bond referendum and Board of Education candidates – who do not run by affiliation with any party – is provided in this issue, in the article What is the PPS Referendum and Who are the Board Candidates?).


For those choosing to vote on the November 7th Election Day, you will notice a change this year. You may recall last November Dominion voting machines malfunctioned across Mercer County, prohibiting voters from scanning their ballots. This led to a bipartisan group of commissioners from the Board of Elections scanning the votes that night. After the fallout, many called for an overhaul. This year, Walker Worthy Jr. is the newly appointed Mercer County Superintendent of Elections, and Paula Sollami-Covello continues her elected role as Mercer County Clerk. Together with the Board of Elections the decision was made to use new Dominion voting machines, hoping to add to the solution.

“The County of Mercer saw it fit to reduce the amount of pre-printed ballots and transport of ballots to the polling locations. We also felt it would make voting easier for voters who made it clear they did not like using Sharpie markers to vote. They preferred pushing buttons to make their choices and we heard them,” Sollami-Covello explains.

At all voting sites, voters will find the new Dominion ICX machines, which were positioned only for early voting last year. They have privacy screens, the ability to enlarge the font, and to have it display in English or Spanish. They also create a verifiable paper trail, with voters using a touch screen to vote, print out their ballots and then scan them into a machine. Additionally, there is the ability to fix any errors once you print out your paper ballot, before you put it through the scanner. Dominion has assured the county that proper personnel will be on-site to oversee things on Election Day.

In addition to the polling machines, there is an all-new application available for your phone or tablet that can help you keep track of everything. The mobile app, NJ Elections, can be downloaded to Apple and Android devices. It can help you register, check your registration, change or declare a party affiliation, request a ballot, follow LIVE election results and more.


Vote by Mail, early voting and election day voting all give those registered a chance to cast their votes.

Vote By Mail – If you prefer to vote in the privacy of your own home and then send your ballot back, that remains an option in New Jersey.  If you have registered, your Vote By Mail ballot should have arrived by now. If you didn’t get one you can still apply to Vote By Mail if you fill out this application and get it to the County Clerk by the end of October. Once you have it and have marked your votes, a Vote By Mail ballot can be mailed back (postmarked by Election Day and received by November 13th) or put in a drop box. In Princeton, the drop boxes can be found in two locations:

  • Princeton Municipal Building – 400 Witherspoon St., Princeton, NJ, 08540 (Front of building, facing Witherspoon)
  • Princeton University Wawa/Dinky Station- 152 Alexander St., Princeton, NJ  08540 (On the circle)

If you registered to Vote By Mail, you are not able to vote in person at a polling site unless you opt out – with one exception. If you never receive your Vote By Mail ballot and want to weigh in, you can cast a Provisional Ballot at your polling location on Election Day.

Early Voting – Perhaps Election Day is not convenient for you, but you prefer to cast in person, on a machine. Early voting makes that possible. You can vote this year from October 28 – November 5, 2023, on Monday-Saturday between 10:00 a.m.–8:00 p.m. and Sunday, 10:00 a.m.–6:00 p.m.

Early voting sites are as follows:

  1. TRENTON – Trenton Fire Department – 244 Perry St, Trenton NJ 08618*
  2. HAMILTON – Colonial Fire Company – 801 Kuser Rd, Hamilton NJ 08619*
  3. LAWRENCE – Mercer County Lawrence Library – 2751 Brunswick Pike, Lawrence NJ 08648
  4. PENNINGTON – Pennington Fire Company – 120 Bromel Place, Pennington NJ 08534
  5. PRINCETON – Princeton Shopping Center – Unit# 260, 301 N Harrison St., Princeton NJ 08540
  6. EAST WINDSOR – Mercer County Hickory Corner Library – 138 Hickory Corner Rd, East Windsor NJ 08520
  7. EWING – Mercer County Office Park – 1440 Parkside Ave, Ewing, NJ 08638

There is no longer a West Windsor location. Mercer County voters are allowed to vote at any of the seven sites throughout early voting, regardless of which municipality you live in. You are also able to track your vote, to ensure it was received and processed by going on the voter portal.

Election Day voting – If you like the tradition of Election Day or find November 7th to be the most convenient date for you, you can head to your assigned polling site only on this date to cast your vote. Your polling location is printed on the sample ballot that comes in the mail (note, this ballot is informational only and not to be used to cast a vote) or can also be found using the polling place search tool. If you would like to get more comfortable in advance with the ballot’s layout and information and you didn’t receive one by mail, you can find the sample ballots here.


Every candidate wants your vote. As of October first, that meant there were 260,002 available votes in Mercer County (based on the 2023 NJ Statewide Voter Registration Statistics). These registered voters lean 45% democrat, 16% republican and 37% unaffiliated. Princeton’s District 16 (which elects the state level candidates) leans slightly different. Of 173,267 registered voters, 36% are democrat, 26% republican and 37% unaffiliated – which can lead to more challenging races.

Only 42% of Mercer County voters cast a vote to decide the County Commissioners in 2022, and only 50% of Princeton’s voters weighed in to decide the Princeton Council and Board of Education outcomes last year. In Princeton, there is a contest this year for every office on the ballot except Council, where a vote will simply demonstrate support of the candidates.

In order to vote, you must be registered in New Jersey by October 17th.

What is the PPS Referendum and Who are the Board Candidates?

The only question on the ballot for Princeton voters this November is whether or not to fund a $13 million bond referendum for Princeton Public Schools (PPS). The “Yes or No” question asks voters to approve what could average out to a $104 annual tax increase (based on Princeton’s average-priced home assessed at nearly $850,000).

With 49% of your tax bill currently going to Princeton Public Schools (with the allowable 2% growth this year plus more for healthcare totaling a 3.2% increase), one might ask what more is needed? PPS has put together a website to help to explain it but we will also break their proposal down for you here.


Simply put, the referendum aims to make security improvements, Wifi and other connectivity enhancements, HVAC upgrades and interior and exterior renovations and improvements at the schools. You can see the general financial breakdown of each as described in this graphic, taken from the referendum website, where amounts for each school are also posted. At the last public school board meeting on September 26th, PPS Business Administrator Matthew Bouldin explained that specific costs for each desired improvement are not made public to protect the bidding process. If approved…

  • All six PPS schools would have upgrades to internet service and energy-efficient climate controls and additionally receive security and camera upgrades and protective window film.
  • Updates to doors and locks at Princeton Middle and High Schools are also included as well as two new security vestibules at the high school.
  • All four elementary schools and the middle school would have minor playground upgrades with drainage improvements in those areas as well at Riverside, Littlebrook and Community Park.
  • The elementary schools would also receive fencing replacement.
  • Johnson Park and Princeton Middle School would have cell service boosters installed.
  • The middle school additionally would get pool area updates and ductwork insulation at the auditorium.
  • For Princeton High School, there are upgrades and repairs included to the kitchen and cafeteria, rooftop ductwork, at the EcoLab and resurfacing of the athletic and track areas.
(As seen on the sample Election Day ballot on MercerCounty.org)

If approved, the referendum would allow PPS to offset the overall cost with $5 million in debt service aid from the state. The Board of Education would be overseeing the use of the referendum funds in addition to the many other details and decisions they tend to, so your vote for the candidates will help decide who will be on that board.


Each year, three seats of the 10-member board are up for election. This year, five candidates are vying for them, two incumbents and three challengers.

You may have seen their campaign materials or heard them at a forum, but it can sometimes be hard to weigh their views against each other. We have created a simple comparison tool to help you know who the candidates are and where each of them stands. Their responses are posted in alphabetical order, not ballot order (as pictured below for reference). For each of our three important questions just click on the + next to each candidate’s name to compare their responses.

(As seen on the sample Election Day ballot on MercerCounty.org)

Princeton is lucky to always have strong candidates for the BOE. This year, two incumbents and three other residents are vying for 3 seats. Why should voters choose you for one of those seats?

Experience matters to improve our schools for kids and meet critical budget and space challenges. Since joining the board, I have spearheaded the board’s complex, long-term planning efforts. Together we have stabilized district finances and implemented two successful referendums that have brought our long-neglected facilities back into shape with new roofs, high-efficiency HVAC, and safety and security features. We’ve also built new classrooms and restrooms, and upgraded health and guidance suites. The board is now developing capacity solutions to address near-term enrollment growth, with no time to spare before at least 1100 units of planned housing are built. I’d like to see this work through and to ensure our excellent schools remain one of the crown jewels of this community.
I am running to restore public trust in the Board. I was born and raised in Princeton and went through the then-called Princeton Regional Schools (PRS). I was raised by my mom, a teacher at PRS for 30-years and father, once President of the BOE. I am also a certified teacher myself, having taught social studies in American schools worldwide, working at a school for teen moms in Trenton, and I write or implement original programs like reading recovery. I know the importance of "keeping an eye on the cash register." In the past, the BOE has spent money frivolously on grandiose building plans and consultants. Somebody should be driving money back into the classroom. A different, independent voice is needed on the board.
I stand out from the other candidates and current members of the BOE in two ways in particular. First, I have younger children, at Riverside and the middle school. With the elementary school planning underway, the district would be well served by a Board member who is tuned in to the needs and experiences of families with younger children. Second, my focus would be primarily on the quality of the education offered by the Princeton Public Schools, the single most important mission of the district. With my background in education, including a PhD and teaching experience in public school and at Princeton University, I am well positioned to offer meaningful oversight in this field. The district is aware of its academic problems, and has commissioned an outside review of its troubled math program following steeply declining scores and missed targets. Yet academic quality seems to have taken a backseat in recent years.
PPS system has many good attributes, but there are areas for improvement. While the BoE does not run the schools, they do set policy & provide oversight. I think the BoE should be more data-led in its decision making & more transparent in its deliberation process. Stronger oversight of execution (ie. KPI/key performance indicator measurement & accountability by the Superintendent). All decisions need to have an owner who can be held accountable for the outcome (subject supervisors, principals, assistant superintendent & ultimately the Superintendent). I will advocate for more transparency in data & communication to the community. For example, in the upcoming referendum, it is important to have more detail on the field/track renovation (ie, there is a difference between being in year 5 or year 12 of a 10-year useful life) or the proposed PHS cafeteria renovation (ie. Are we expanding capacity 50% or 150%? Are we future-proofing for added enrollment for the new housing that is coming or is this a stop-gap measure? Are we replacing end of useful life kitchen appliances or are we replacing tables/chairs?) My current job is all about analyzing data and identifying what is relevant or not, and I believe I can bring a fresh perspective on priorities, how to action on said priorities and listening and communicating with the community.
The Princeton Board of Education is regularly charged with making decisions in a wide variety of areas, including personnel, operations, facilities, policy making, education and many more. My background in local, state and federal government brings an unmatched record of experience in all those areas to the position. Princeton prides itself on its excellent schools and also its diversity. I am an advocate for excellence and equality and believe that the voters want a school system that offers a quality education to all students. Casting a ballot for me will ensure that those priorities will continue to stay front and center as we navigate a challenging environment.

The past year was quite tumultuous for Princeton Public Schools. What do you take away from it that would guide your leadership on the BOE for the next three years should you have that opportunity?

Good people may passionately disagree, depending on experience, information and trust. As parents and citizens elected to represent our neighbors (31,000 and counting), board members steward a school district with a $100+ million budget and 750+ employees, based on information that can’t always legally be shared with everyone. We need to improve the tone and content of communications, and to build trust by continuing to listen to all voices, including the quiet ones, while staying focused on the best interest of all students. We should model the hard work of democracy for our kids – showing each other grace, communicating with respect, and learning from our differing perspectives.
I have the "institutional wisdom" to understand the educational ecosystem's policy, process, and politics and the ability to analyze data and make informed decisions about a district's budget and programs. I want to know what I don't know, so I "harvest the intelligentsia." This town has so many people with expertise and experience, and I tap into that. Finally, mistakes happen, but this administration and its incompetence cause too many unforced errors that result in education distractions, leadership discontinuity, litigation, and loss of morale. I would lower the temperature and prioritize what is essential (students/teachers) and what battles to fight.
Dr. Kelley and Mr. Chmiel were both hired by the sitting members of the Board of Education and the public conflict between them was damaging and painful to our community. I would like to see more collaboration among district leaders, and to see the Board focus on building a strong administrative team and positive culture. We need our administrators to work together to address pandemic learning loss, improve curriculum and instruction, maintain good relationships with stakeholders, carry out the strategic plan, cope with the budget crunch resulting from the 2% cap, and deal proactively with demographic change and rising enrollments. There is a lot of work to do and collaboration rather than conflict is the way to get it done.
I would push to engage the community early & often on important issues facing PPS. I want the BoE to explain the options that have been looked at (pro/con), explain decision for course of action/vendor, identify KPI’s to measure success/failure, define a timeframe to measure success/failure and identify a back-up plan (if necessary). I would not be afraid to pivot & recommend a different course of action if a prior decision results in outcomes contrary to that which was intended.
EVERY year is tumultuous for our public schools! From pandemics, to staff changes, ensuring student safety and negotiating labor agreements, the Board is regularly confronted with challenges that are immediate and impactful. Service as a public official requires commitment to the purpose and parameters of the job, an ability to listen and willingness to take action that is always in the best interest of ALL students, our staff, the district and the community at large. A thick skin is also very helpful.

As a member of the BOE, there are many hats you must wear and many priorities you must have. But, if you were asked to lead one thing, what would your priority/project focus on and why?

Two of PPS’ most critical challenges involve space and budget, as we strive to maintain class-size expectations amid rising enrollments, while continuing to meet student needs despite a 2% year-to-year tax levy cap and inflation. If re-elected, I would continue leading long-term planning efforts, applying my professional background in finance, organizational management and law, as well as my proven track record: two successful referendums implemented, seasoned facilities and finance team built, collaborative capacity planning effort underway, only 1.9% effective tax increases, and $15 million support from Princeton University.
We need to use our existing facilities more efficiently. Educational capacity at Princeton High School (PHS) and John Witherspoon Middle School (JWMS) is based upon a 75 to 80 percent utilization factor. We must find a way to leave 20 to 25 percent of our classroom space. With class scheduling software and other efficiencies, we should increase utilization to 90 percent. I favor teachers over expensive new facilities. We need to take better care of the buildings that we have. I also prefer cost-effective and affordable solutions over enrollment growth, such as adding a classroom into existing schools such as Johnson Park (JP), Riverside (RS), or JWMS if necessary. JP and Riverside have beautiful campuses with room to add a wing with 6-8 classrooms cost-effectively for expansion.
My priority would be student achievement: improving the quality of curricula and the consistency of expert teaching in the Princeton Public Schools. This has been an area of neglect for the Board in recent years, and one in which the current Board lacks sufficient expertise.
I would want to focus on how we close the learning gap for the underperforming groups within PPS. It is important for those groups but will also help overall PPS. I believe my background (Hispanic, 1st generation American) gives me a unique insight into some of these challenges. I believe there are some initiatives that can be taken that can be high impact and low/no cost.
My priority has always been to achieve excellence and equity for ALL students in our public schools. Unfortunately, for decades we have been unable to reach that goal. Our test scores tell us that for certain groups of students, our efforts have not met with success. I know that as a community we are smart enough, resourceful enough and committed enough to address our shortcomings in that area. If we lead with intention, consistency and commitment to address the inequities in our school system, I believe that we can make progress toward ensuring that every student graduates with the skills and opportunity to succeed in life.


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To provide a little more background, we also compiled brief bios for each candidate here:

Beth Behrend
A PPS parent and corporate attorney, Beth has served as Board President, Long-Term Planning Chair, and on all other board committees. She serves as one of two invited NJ board-member representatives on the Executive Board of the Garden State Coalition of Schools. Beth previously advised Fortune 500 companies on finance and corporate matters, and served on many boards, including the Watershed Institute, the Riverside School PTO, the PTO Council and UUCP.

Adam Bierman
I was born and raised in Princeton, New Jersey where I went through the entire then-called Princeton Regional School System (PRS). Public service and education are in my family’s DNA. My mom was a teacher in the PRS for 30+ years. My dad served as school board president. I teach social studies in American schools worldwide, mainly in Latin America and China and currently work at a school for teen moms in Trenton, New Jersey. There, I teach social studies and help out with PE class. I also originate and implement programs such as Reading Recovery, verbal de-escalation, Business ESL, and a full-service sex Ed program working with Planned Parenthood.

Eleanor Hubbard
A historian by training, Eleanor Hubbard moved to Princeton to teach at Princeton University, and lives here with her husband and their three children, who all attend the Princeton Public Schools. Before earning her PhD from Harvard University, she taught public school in the South Bronx as a New York City Teaching Fellow. Her interest in children and education also led her to serve for eight years as a trustee of UNOW, the early childhood center. In her spare time, she enjoys reading, gardening, and singing in the choir Princeton Pro Musica.

Rene Obregon
I was born and raised in Clifton, NJ and have resided in Princeton for the last 14 years. My wife, Karolin Obregon, is a teacher at Cherry Hill Nursery School. We have 2 teenage boys who both went to Johnson Park, PMS and are now in PHS. I am a bilingual first generation American of Peruvian & Cuban parents. I graduated from Lehigh University and for the last 25 years I have worked in finance in NYC. I am currently the CEO of Numis Securities, Inc.

Michelle Tuck-Ponder
Michele Tuck-Ponder is a 32-year resident of Princeton. She has served two terms on the Princeton Board of Education and was elected to two terms on the Princeton Township Committee, including three years as the town’s Mayor. Michele was a Commissioner of the Princeton Housing Authority, a member of New Jersey’s Martin Luther King Commission and held positions in the United States Senate, U.S. House of Representatives and the Office of the Governor. She is currently the CEO of Destination Imagination, Inc., a global creative education program. A graduate of Northwestern University and the University of Pennsylvania Law School, Michele is married to Rhinold Ponder, Esq. and has two children: Jamaica (PHS 2017) and William, a junior at Princeton HS.

To vote for the Board of Education candidates and weigh in on the referendum, you must complete that section of the ballot. How, where and when to vote is detailed in this issue, in the article The General Election: Who’s Running? What’s New? What’s at Stake?

Editor’s Note

At every age, there are things that one must face in life. Some are within one’s control, others are not. With numerous decisions and recent happenings that can have an impact on various age groups, the best way to stay on top of them is to be aware. So, this month, Princeton Perspectives is delving into them in the issue Changes That Can Have a Strong Impact on Your Life.

Celebrating a big anniversary or pushing yourself to benefit others are two things that can impact people. They’re also the topics of the two Perspectives Revisited items we’re updating you on this month. Read below to see what’s happening.

What changes have happened recently that you’ve had to deal with? That’s what we asked area locals in this month’s Pulse of Princeton. Learning what others encounter and how they handle themselves can be great lessons for all of us, so watch the video to learn what they have to share.

There have been some changes this year when it comes to medical access, and it’s important that everyone is aware. Pregnant? Need a Doctor? There’s Fewer Choices Right Now around Princeton is our article that sheds light on the current situation of obstetrics in the Princeton area. It’s causing some to worry, so we hope to provide some answers.

At the other end of the life cycle, those that are aging are often tasked with figuring out how and where to live. The article How Can Seniors Remain in NJ and Also Live Safely in Their Own Homes? looks at a recent new program passed in NJ, and what is available in the greater Princeton area to allow for independence, assistance and more.

As one is growing up, there is a lot of emphasis placed on a good education and upbringing. Many move to the Princeton area for just those reasons. What’s in a Ranking? Does the Latest U.S. News Report Matter in Princeton? delves into the recent report on Princeton High School while sharing the views and context by which people view it.

Once one finishes high school, most in Princeton go onto college. Navigating Uncharted Waters: The Altered Terrain of College Admissions tells you what you need to know about the elimination of affirmative action in the admissions process, with a local perspective on moving through it.

As the new school year begins, and fall starts to settle in, we hope that you all enjoyed the summer and are ready to look ahead. Our October issue, as always, will provide you with all the details you need to know to be educated and informed come election day. There are many local and state positions that are open this year, and the winning candidates could have a huge impact on the future of Princeton and New Jersey. So, we hope to help you prepare to vote.

Until then, stay safe and read on!

Pulse of Princeton: What changes have you experienced recently?