Up until about 7:15 p.m. Tuesday, Bayville resident James J. Byrnes was president of the Berkeley Board of Education.
Several minutes later, he had a new title — Township Council president.
Byrnes, 62, Dogwood Drive, made the jump from the school board to the governing body shortly after Township Council members unanimously selected him as the Ward 1 representative at the Jan. 17 council meeting.
He replaces former Township Council President Karen Davis, who resigned on Jan. 1 to concentrate on knee surgery rehabilitation.
"I'd just like to thank the board for your confidence," Byrnes said, as he took his seat at the center of the council dais. "I'm flattered to be moved here so fast. I think I can do more for the schools and the town by bringing all my expertise here. Thank you and God bless."
The Berkeley Township Republican Municipal Committee met several times over the past two weeks to select three candidates for the Ward 1 seat. Township Council members interviewed the three candidates yesterday afternoon, Councilwoman Fran Siddons said.
Fulcomer and Kowalewski were both elected to their first terms on the Berkeley school board last April.
Council members then tapped 41-year-old Kevin M. Askew to serve as the Ward 2 representative. He replaces Carmen Amato, who was elected mayor in November.
The other two selected by the Republican Municipal Committee for the Ward 2 seat were Central Regional Board of Education President Keith Buscio and Mitchell Horowitz, Siddons said.
Council members then unanimously elected Councilwoman Judy Noonan to serve as council vice-president for 2012.
"Thank you very much," said Noonan, who is in the middle of her first term."I appreciate it. I've been coming to council meetings for 11 years and it's my privilege to serve. Thank you for your support."
Noonan and Siddons are now the senior members on the Township Council. All of the other members were sworn in or appointed to their first terms this year.
The seven-member Township Council is also now solidly in Republican hands. John Bacchione, Robert G. Ray and Thomas Grosse easily outdistanced their Democratic challengers in the November election.