Monmouth County Surrogate Rosemarie Peters has informed Republican Party leaders that she will not stand for reelection this year.
Peters, 78, was elected in 2006 after serving on the Middletown Township Committee for 18 years. She was reelected by wide margins in 2011 and 2016.
“Rosemarie Peters has served the people of Monmouth County and New Jersey with compassion and integrity, ” said Monmouth County Republican Chairman, Sheriff Shaun Golden. “Her leadership in the Surrogate’s Office has provided comfort to citizens during the times of grief when they are dealing with their deceased loved ones assets and with joy when they are adopting children.
“Mrs. Peter’s statewide leadership with the Constitutional Officers Association and the League of Municipalities has made a difference for all New Jersey residents and has made Monmouth County proud.
“On behalf of the Monmouth County Republican Organization and all citizens of Monmouth County, I thank Rosemarie for her distinguished 33 year career in public service and wish her joy and good health in her retirement.”
“Rosemarie Peters exemplifies Republican good government,” said Peter Carton, Chairman of the Middletown Republican Committee. “As a member of the League of Women Voters, she was challenged to run for the Middletown Township Committee. In the eighteen years she served, she brought grace, humor and a can-do attitude to running the largest municipality in Monmouth County-repeatedly identifying ways to make it better and seeing them through to completion.
“She has done the same as the County Surrogate, working with the Commissioners, County Clerk and Sheriff and her terrific staff to develop new programs and creative ways to educate residents on the office, the need to plan ahead and then handling the passing of a loved one in the warmest and most compassionate of manners. She will be missed.”
Under the New Jersey Constitution, Surrogate is a quasi-judicial position. Surrogates’ political activity is limited by the Canons of Judicial Conduct.
Nevertheless, Peters has been a powerhouse at the polls.
In 2006, a difficult year for Republicans in which a Democrat was elected freeholder for the first time in decades, Peters was the top vote getter county-wide. She defeated fellow Middletown resident Beverly Bova Scarano 88,093 to 83,152, 51.4% to 48.6%
Peters won a second term in a landslide in 2011, defeating Michael Steinhorn of Rumson by over 21,000 votes.
In 2016, Peters outperformed Sheriff Shaun Golden and Freeholders Tom Arnone and Serena DiMaso as she crushed Vincent Solomeno of Hazlet by over 43,000 votes.