Nine candidates have filed to run for the Bayonne Board of Education election on November 3, according to the Hudson County Clerk’s office.
They will face off for three seats currently held by Board President Maria Valado, Vice President Christopher Munoz, and Trustee Michael Alonso.
Together We Can
Incumbent President Valado is running for re-election on the “Together We Can” ticket. Appointed as President this year, Valado won her seat in 2017.
Running with her on the ticket is current Vice President Munoz. Elected in 2015, he was appointed Vice President this year.
New to the slate is David Watson, a local musician and former Band Director at Bayonne High School.
“Together We Can” candidates have traditionally been endorsed by Mayor James Davis.
Make Bayonne Great
Running against the “Together We Can” slate is “Make Bayonne Great,” led by Alonso. He was absent from the July 27 meeting, where the board voted on three plans for reopening schools in the fall.
Fellow Bayonne Republicans Charles Shepard and Michael Shatravka are also on the ticket. Shepard ran for the board in 2019 but failed to garner enough votes.
Shatravka, a local media producer, is new to the ticket.
The board is typically nonpartisan, but Alonso and his ticket of Republicans align themselves with President Donald Trump, with their slogan echoing Trump’s “Make America Great Again.”
Responsibility, Integrity, and Care
The third slate, running under the slogan “Responsibility, Integrity, and Care,” includes newcomers Denis Wilbeck Jr., son of current Trustee Wilbeck, and Andrew Kim.
Running as an independent is Charles Ryan, who narrowly lost re-election to the board in 2019. Ryan is a captain at the Bayonne Police Department, who previously ran on a ticket with Trustee Wilbeck.
Residents may use vote-by-mail ballots due to the COVID-19 pandemic, just as with the July 7 primary. It is unclear if candidates will hold a debate, as was the case in 2019.
For updates on this and other stories, check www.hudsonreporter.com and follow us on Twitter @hudson_reporter. Dan Israel can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.