OCEAN COUNTY, NJ – Bobbie Jo Crea, 72, a councilwoman in Little Egg Harbor was given the endorsement by Ocean County Chairman GOP Frank Holman to run for the office of Ocean County Committeewoman in the November 2021 election. The nomination caught everyone within the Ocean County Republican establishment, who didn’t realize the decision was pre-determined by surprised.
That’s because in 2019, before assuming control of the Ocean County Republican organization, Chairman Frank holman promised to “Make the Ocean County GOP Great Again“. What has followed since has been a series of missteps and follies by Holman and the leadership contingent of the party.
“The establishment insiders shouldn’t have all the power, you should,” Holman said two years ago. “[I will] build our grassroots rank and file from the bottom up by running more women, young people, and ethnically diverse candidates for office.”
Instead, on Saturday, Holman gave Republican voters more of the same, passying up a well qualified stable of younger candidates for the position including ; Lacey Mayor Peter Curatolo; Lisa Hodgson-Henson, a realtor from Surf City; Jackson Council President Andrew Kern; former Stafford Council President Sharon McKenna; former Point Pleasant Beach Mayor Stephen Reid; former Brick school board candidate Victor Finamore; Ocean Township Board of Education member Shawn Denning; Pine Beach Mayor Lawrence Cuneo former Brock Councilman Michael Thulen; Island Heights Councilman Rolf Weber; and former Assistant Ocean County Prosecutor Rory Wells.
The Ocean County Board of Commissioners is an aging group of elected officials in their 60’s and 70’s, many have been entrenched in county politics since the 1980’s. The board generally caters to the county’s large senior citizen population and Crea is sure to win the senior block vote in 2021, if she does not get removed in a floor vote on March 10th.
On Saturday, Holman and his handpicked board of pay-to-play and patronage screening commitee members potentially set up a floor vote challenge at the upcoming county nominating convention. Holman has not fared well when it comes to actually letting the party decide candidates. He’s 0-2 so far in floor votes after being defeated in 2020 by Hirsh Singh for U.S. Senate and David Richter for U.S. Congress.
Crea’s position on measuring tree trunks during a pandemic was not immediately made available by Holman.
She is a widower. Her husband Richard J. Crea passed away in 2019 at the age of 79 and has served as mayor of Little Egg Harbor Township.