In Bayonne, Ryan joins incumbents Wilbeck, Desmond, Cruden on BOE


Charles Ryan, a retired Bayonne deputy chief of police, will be joining incumbents Denis Wilbeck, Mary Jane Desmond and Carol Cruden on the Bayonne Board of Education, according to unofficial vote totals from the Hudson County Board of Elections.

Charles Ryan

By John Heinis/Hudson County View

In an extremely clean election that saw candidates almost completely focus on their goals and platforms instead of mudslinging, all three incumbents were elected to serve on the Bayonne BOE for a three-year term.

Wilbeck, the current vice president of the board, led all candidates with 6,239 votes, while Desmond was number 2 in total votes with 5,093 – though current tallies do not include mail-in or provisional ballots.

“I’m really grateful, I want to thank my brother Patrick for running this campaign, he did an awesome job, but I thank all the voters: I promise to do the best I can and I’m really happy to be back,” Desmond told Hudson County View at her private victory party at Kuhl’s Tavern on Prospect Avenue.

Rounding out the trustees staying on the board is Carol Cruden, who, along with Desmond, was appointed to the board in February. Cruden narrowly edged out Gina Irizarry by 177 votes – 2,801 to 2,624.

Candidates Leonard Cantor and Michael Alonso were also in striking distance, losing by just a few hundred votes.

Ryan, who taught for two years before becoming a police officer, beat educator Maria Valado by 499 votes in a three-person race for a two-year term on the board. Candidate John Cupo was a distant third.

Three-year terms


Denis F. Wilbeck* – 6,239


Mary Jane Desmond* – 5,093


Carol R. Cruden* – 2,801


Gina Irizarry – 2,624


Leonard R. Kantor – 2,538


Michael J. Alonso – 2,450


George J. Vinc Jr. – 2,333


John Milan Sebik – 1,938


Sharma L. Montgomery – 1,881

* denotes an incumbent


2-year term


Charles Ryan – 3,713


Maria Valado – 3,241


John R. Cupo – 1,797

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