Former Howell Mayor Joe DiBella said that he will not be a candidate for Freeholder and that he strongly supports current Howell Mayor Bob Walsh for the post. DiBella said that he and Walsh, formerly political adversaries, have become close friends.
Walsh and Holmdel Deputy Mayor Serena DiMaso are the currently declared candidates to fill the vacancy caused by Freeholder Director Rob Clifton’s election to the State Assembly. A new Freeholder will be elected at a Republican County Committee convention on January 14, 2012. The winner will take office immediately and will have to defend the seat in the 2012 and 2013 general elections.
Other candidates mentioned by party leaders or said to be considering a bid include Atlantic Highlands Councilman Peter Doyle, Affiliated Republican Club Vice President Bob Burlew of Keyport, former Middletown Committeeman Tom Wilkens, Manalapan Deputy Mayor Ryan Green, Freehold Township Deputy Mayor Anthony Ammiano and Wall Committeeman George Newberry.