Dr. Matthew Hale on July 18, 2018 was sworn in as a borough council member by Mayor Gayle Brill Mittler to fill the unexpired term of Councilman Matthew Hersh. Replacing one Matthew H with another Matthew H was necessitated by Matt Hersh’s resignation from council in order to join Governor Phil Murphy’s administration as director of Communications for the NJ Board of Public Utilities.
“Matt Hale is a tenured political science professor at Seton Hall University and is widely respected for his political commentary. Matt has chaired our Digital Data Task-force, and it is an asset to have him join Highland Park Borough Council,” said Mayor Brill Mittler, who added that Matt Hersh’s new appointment demonstrates that Highland Park talent is treasured in Trenton.
“As for the council, many residents may not realize how much of a formidable commitment it is to join borough council. In addition to attending council meetings, Matt Hale, along with fellow Council members Elsie Foster-Dublin, Josh Fine, Phil George, Stephany Kim-Chohan, and Susie Welkovits are asked to chair one borough committee and participate in two other committees.
“This translates into a time commitment that involves one, two, and sometimes three nights of meetings in a week. Council members are also asked to attend borough events like Arts in the Park and National Night Out and to participate in any activities their committees sponsor. Serving on the council is a serious obligation and I thank our council members for their dedication to our community,” said the mayor.
Matt Hale in new role as council member also will chair the Borough’s Health and Human Services Committee.
His official bio on the Highland Park Borough website describes Matt Hale as an associate professor and Master of Public Administration (MPA) program chair for the Department of Political Science and Public Affairs at Seton Hall University. His research focuses on how the media covers the public and nonprofit sectors.
Matt is a regular media commentator on New Jersey politics. In 2016 he appeared in over 250 news articles around the country. He writes a regular column called “So… What about this?” for the influential New Jersey political web site InsiderNJ.com.
At Seton Hall, he has taught many courses in the MPA program including the Environment of Public Service, Public Policy Analysis, Public Sector Leadership, Public Sector Ethics, Financial Management and Budgeting, Research Methods, and Strategic Management and Governance.
In November 2017, Matt received the Dr. Thomas J. Davy Academic Achievement Award from the New Jersey Municipal Management Association, at their annual luncheon during the New Jersey League of Municipalities conference in Atlantic City. Matt received the award in recognition of his outstanding work as an educator in the field of public administration. This award was particularly meaningful to Matt, because his former students nominated him for this award.
Matt’s interest in politics precedes his academic life. He worked as an aide to California Senator Barbara Boxer and in the press and candidate advance operations for several local, state and national political campaigns.
Married with three children ranging in ages from five years old to 15 years old, he plays competitive tennis and sl, Eva (15), Zach (13), and David (5). When he is not teaching, writing, talking on TV, or chasing after the children, he plays competitive tennis – when he is not reaching, writing, talking on TV, or keeping up with the activities of his children. By the way, his tennis team won the USTA National 3.0 championship in 2016.