The Johnston Democratic Town Committee – whose slogan reads, “Working Together, Winning Together” – held two pre-holiday happenings Monday night inside The Bridge at Cherry Hill.
“Tonight, we are welcoming aboard four new members to the Johnston Democratic Town Committee,” Richard J. DelFino Jr., the committee’s long-serving chairman, announced. “The four new additions have well-established community roots in our town and represent the dedicated working families of Johnston.”
DelFino, who also serves as Municipal Court clerk, went on: “I’m excited about them sharing their time and talents on behalf of all Johnston residents. At the same time, I’m sorry we were filling the void left behind by a committed public servant in Janice Mele and the others who have moved on. We are indebted to them for their time and service to the JDTC.”
Thus, DelFino announced that John Dick, who owns and operates Atwood Florist, would fill a vacancy and represent District 1 on the JDTC. He replaces Neicy Tavares, who recently moved from Johnston to a new home.
Likewise, Dawn Aliosio – who is a first-term member of the Johnston School Committee – will move into the District 2 seat that was vacant until Monday’s meeting.
The other new JDTC members include Joe Grasso, a well-known Johnston native who had long been active in community affairs and is the father of Jacqueline Grasso, chief judge of the Johnston Municipal Court. The other new JDTC member is Al Carnevale, another long-time resident.
Grasso and Carnevale will represent District 3 and move into seats once occupied by the late Mele – the longtime Johnston School Committee chairwoman who passed away earlier this year – and Claudia Belluscio, whom Mele drove to each and every committee meeting.
“It’s almost like we’re having two celebrations tonight,” said Linda Folcarelli, who is in her first term representing District 1 on the Town Council. “We’ve got four new members and the results of our recent raffle are exciting.”
DelFino, meanwhile, went from congratulating the four new JDTC members to heaping word of praise upon member Elaine Cabral, who chaired an ambitious calendar raffle that featured $1,000 in prizes and 30 chances to win.
“The raffle committee led by Elaine Cabral was well organized and [produced] our most successful fundraiser to date,” he said. “Elaine volunteered to run the raffle. She did a great job, as you can see with tonight’s drawings. There were lots of great prizes that were made possible by the generosity of local businesses in and around Johnston.”
“This is like Christmas coming early for some people in our group and folks around town who generously paid $10 each to buy a ticket,” committee member Steve Mullane said. “Hats off to Elaine. This was a great fundraiser with some super prizes.”