Melissa Honohan for Council

I have always had a passion for helping people and a desire to give back to the community that has provided my family and me with support and opportunities. I can’t think of a better way to achieve both of those objectives than by running to serve on the Madison Council. Madison has been a part of my life for some of my most meaningful years – offering a strong sense of community, great schools and activities for my daughter, the ability to shop locally and enjoy its many parks and trails, and a clear connection between values and action. I have always been proud that Madison uses its time and tax dollars on what the community, my family and I value most.

When I moved to Madison in 2008, I knew it was where I wanted my daughter, who was four at the time, to be able to grow up being closer to her grandparents and extended family. A few years ago, I heard the call of, “If not us, who?” and realized that I needed to step up. I found volunteering a direct way to give back and to help keep Madison the strong, vibrant community it is. In 2011, I was appointed to serve on the Open Space, Recreation and Historic Preservation Advisory Committee serving as Chair now and in the past.  I am a current member of the Planning Board, member of the Madison Community Garden, past member of the Board of Trustees of the New Jersey Performing Arts Center, and am currently organizing the June 2023 National Trails Day event in Madison. I am a huge soccer fan and have been a volunteer coach for the Madison Recreation Soccer league and Head Coach for the Madison Soccer Club. I am an active member of Grace Church in Madison (Altar Guild Lead), which has helped me build my leadership skills while giving me a sense of belonging and an outlet for my commitment to give back to community.

I am proud to tell people I live in Madison, with our world-class schools and library system, vibrant downtown, historic neighborhoods, and access to parks and recreation. I realize this doesn’t just happen – all these incredible amenities take years of hard work, focus and commitment from leaders and the entire community. I take seriously our responsibility to protect our environment for future generations, and I believe we must work together to protect the Drew Forest. Through my volunteer work on the Open Space Advisory Committee, I have been able to work closely with members of the Council, the Borough Administration, and other volunteers. I know first-hand the hard work it takes to listen to others with different opinions, build consensus, and work towards success. I’m proud of the Committee’s work with groups like The Land Conservancy of New Jersey to secure funding for open space projects.

Professionally, I work in the medical community helping providers and patients get the treatment they need to live longer and healthier lives. Through this role, I work closely with patient advocates and community stakeholders to identify potential areas for partnership. In prior professional roles, I honed my skills in leadership, collaboration, planning, and complex financial budgeting, all of which lends itself to this role on Council.

When I think about areas of opportunity, I believe Madison can continue to build on walkability and accessibility.  We can continue to foster positive relationships with area colleges and universities to engage students, build connections, and protect resources such as the Drew Forest. As a community, we will need to work together to consider the future use of Giralda Farms given the shifting ways of corporate workplaces and the need for affordable and senior friendly housing.

Truly, the reason I decided to run is because I feel I have been the beneficiary of great Borough leadership, careful town planning, and a strong school system. It is my turn to step up to listen to my neighbors and community members, to represent their ideas and give voice to those in the Borough who can’t always speak up about issues that matter to them. I’m a good listener with experience working with diverse stakeholders to build consensus and understanding. My values of transparency and accountability also help in this role.

I could not be happier to join Mayor Bob Conley, Council member Bob Landrigan, and fellow volunteer John Forte in asking for your vote. Together, we represent decades of giving back to the town we love, and our diverse experiences and skills can have an amazing, positive impact on how Madison navigates the future. I hope my Madison neighbors will put their trust in me to represent them, as we continue to move Madison forward together.