Hometown Haverford, PA
Birthday March 21
Geoffrey Wertime is the editor for the East Windsor Patch. He graduated from Vassar College in 2006, Phi Beta Kappa with general and departmental (French) honors. He moved to a small town in the west of France and spent the next academic year as an English language teaching assistant before returning to the U.S.
Once back, Geoff jumped into the world of journalism, starting out as an Editorial Assistant at Packet Publications and quickly working his way up to Lifestyle Editor and then Staff Writer. The New Jersey Press Association thrice recognized him for his work, first with a 2nd-place Robert P. Kelly Award for best first-year writing in 2008, and then with a 1st-place award for Environmental/Health and Science writing and a 3rd-place Leonard P. Burns Memorial Award for responsible journalism/public service in 2009. That year also brought a 1st-place blog award from the New Jersey Chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists.
In late 2009 and early 2010, Geoff pulled double-duty as a Field Organizer for Garden State Equality, a state LGBT rights group, during the ultimately unsuccesful push to get a marriage equality bill passed.
At Patch, we promise always to report the facts as objectively as possible and otherwise adhere to the principles of good journalism. However, we also acknowledge that true impartiality is impossible because human beings have beliefs. So in the spirit of simple honesty, our policy is to encourage our editors to reveal their beliefs to the extent they feel comfortable. This disclosure is not a license for them to inject their beliefs into stories or to dictate coverage according to them. In fact, the intent is the opposite: we hope that the knowledge that their beliefs are on the record will cause them to be ever mindful to write, report and edit in a fair, balanced way. And if you ever see evidence that we failed in this mission, please let us know.
How would you describe your political beliefs?
I identify as a progressive liberal.
Are you registered with a certain party?
I am a registered Democrat and I vote, but I don't consider myself beholden to any one party and I have voted across party lines.
How religious would you consider yourself? (casual, observant, devout, non religious)
I am non-religious.
Local Hot-Button Issues
What do you think are the most important issues facing the community?
The financial difficulties of Hightstown and its possible consolidation with East Windsor, and staunched development in Hightstown and East Windsor.
Where do you stand on each of these issues?
I think Hightstown, where I live, is facing an extraordinary financial situation and will have to act aggressively to get out of it. I don't claim to know how that should be done, but I don't think the borough has been open-minded enough about possibilities. I think consolidating Hightstown and East Windsor makes sense and is more a matter of when and how than if.
Areas like the Rug Mill and Minute Maid properties show how to borough needs to organize itself and work with East Windsor. The mill is entirely within Hightstown and its development has been a legal quagmire for years. Given the rising tax rates, developing that land should be a priority. The Minute Maid facility stretches from the borough to the township, and it's far past time the two entities work together to figure out what to do with this large stretch of land.
I live by the former Bethany Gospel Mission, which became uninhabitable after one of the people in need there accidentally set it ablaze early this century. I haven't hid the fact I think the site is a nuisance, but I'm happy to see work has finally begun to restore it.