End of a Council Era: Lee's Last Meeting

Republican Cindy Burnham to sit on Red Bank Borough Council dais for the first time Wednesday night, replacing three-term former Red Bank Councilwoman Sharon Lee.

Red Bank Councilwoman Sharon Lee's last governing body meeting was in December.

After nine years on the dais, she lost her bid for a fourth term in the November election to now Councilwoman Cindy Burnham. It's the first time a Republican has sat on the all-Democratic council since Grace Cangemi filled the unexpired term of Kaye Earnst in 2008.

Burnham was sworn in to her first term on council on New Year's Day. Tonight is the first time she will sit on the governing body at the regular 6:30 meeting of the Red Bank Mayor and Council. It's also a first without Lee on the dais in nearly a decade.

Take a look at the above video of Lee's last moments on the dais, Mayor Pat Menna's goodbye to her and clips of her time in office. 

The following is a letter from Lee reflecting on her past and future as a public official and resident of Red Bank:

I initially became involved in public affairs as a councilwoman in Red Bank because of my life-long attachment to my town. 

I am a native Red Banker, the proud daughter of a family that made its home and life in this town. I attended local public schools, local churches, have lived in the same neighborhood all of my life. 

I have a passion for the life of Red Bank and its residents. It is not something that is learned, but accumulated by a lifetime of experience and challenges. It is the framework delivered to me by my parents, that I have imparted to my son.

My term on the Red Bank Council has been for me and my son a period of pride.  I have addressed the issues that confront all of us with a view to trying to do the right thing as we move constantly to adapt to changing circumstances, growth and development. 

I have not been partisan and have not engaged in petty issues, I have  not  been disruptive of the progress that we have made. I am proud to have contributed to that progress, that is evident on so many horizons.

Many have advised that I seek  a review of the votes cast in the last election.   I respect the passion and advice of those who have counseled that, but have decided to concede the loss of my bid for re-election to the Council. 
It would be disruptive and counterproductive to continue to review the outcome of an election when the real issue is service to my neighbors, not the personal victory of one candidate over another. 

I will continue that service in whatever capacity that affords itself to me. My dedication to my town and its residents did not start with my service as a councilwoman.

It will not end now that I have ended my current term on office on Dec. 31. I thank all who have supported me and my colleagues on the council and my mayor. 

I wish Councilwoman-elect Burnham every good wish as she assumes her duties.

I believe in being a part of Red Bank and will continue in that capacity as a private citizen.

Russell Crosson January 08, 2014 at 07:42 AM
Sharon, Red Bank is a better place directly because of people like you that give so much. Thank you and the entire Council for all you have done for Red Bank as a whole. Cindy has, as well shown heart for many years in Red Bank and I wish her the best to fill your shoes. Doing so will be no easy task! Russ Crosson, COFFEE CORRAL


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