news from the campaign trail
Why I'm Running
by Peter Yacobellis
Ready to come off of the sidelines, I’m running to represent all Montclair, NJ residents as Councilor-At-Large in the election taking place by mail in the coming weeks. If elected, I’ll dedicate myself to the responsible evolution of this town. To me, that’s about affordability and community, mobility and safety, parking and quality of life.
Bridging Gen X and Millennial generations, I will bring new energy to our local government. I’ve gained skills in the public and private sectors that will make me an active voice for everyday people. As the first openly LGBTQ candidate for Township office, I stand committed to diversity, inclusion, and equality. And with an education in environmental sustainability, I’m ready to help Montclair become a model for how municipal government confronts climate change.
I've dedicated most of my life to public service, starting in the New York City office of U.S. Senator Hillary Clinton. Under New York Governors David Paterson and Andrew Cuomo, I managed the Hurricane Sandy emergency response center, oversaw the state’s Office of Rent Administration for Manhattan, and contributed to the successful enactment of marriage equality and robust gun control legislation. I’ve also been Finance Director for Garden State Equality and served on the Government Affairs Committee for the Board of the Trevor Project, which addresses bullying and suicide prevention. Most recently, I was Chief of Staff of the team that launched Shop Small and Small Business Saturday at American Express.
The product of public schools myself, I believe Montclair’s children deserve an education that’s high-quality and equitable--and that the condition of our schools should be a source of pride and not a concern.
I like to walk and ride my bike, so I care deeply about the safety of pedestrians and cyclists. And as a car owner who is tired of circling for parking, I believe Montclair needs a 21st-century parking strategy. I will also be an advocate for NJ transit commuters, as I was one for the last 15 years.
Montclair is the home I chose because of its diversity, vibrant local culture, and abundance of places to exercise, dine, shop, play, and enjoy the arts. I know we can grow responsibly without letting go of what makes us unique or, more importantly, losing the people who make us so.
Fellow Montclairions, I hope I can earn your vote for Councilor-At-Large. Watch your mailboxes for your mail-in ballot.