Medford names Charles Watson as mayor for 2017

Watson was born and raised in the Medford community.

Charles “Chuck” Watson was unanimously elected as the new mayor of Medford Township at the town council reorganization meeting that was held on the evening of Tuesday, Jan 3. His second time being sworn in as mayor, as the first was in 2015, he was accompanied by his wife and granddaughter.

“I would like to thank Mayor [Jeffrey] Beenstock for doing a really great job this past year. We had a lot to do, and some difficult things, and [his] leadership was very much appreciated,” Watson said. “It was an honor to serve as your deputy.”

Watson then thanked council for presenting him with the opportunity to assume the role of mayor, and said he found the nomination very humbling as a man who has lived in Medford all of his life.

“The opportunity to be the mayor of the town in which I was born and raised [is an honor],” Watson said. “If you look back at where we came from five years ago, to where we are now with this group — including ex-mayor Randy Pace, that’s not here with us any longer — we’ve really taken Medford to a great place.”

Watson concluded his acceptance speech by explaining there is still work to be done within the community, but he is confident council will continue to be able to accomplish great things this year. Included in his plans for the next year are to focus on maintaining a fiscally responsible budget with capital improvements and to “make moves” on a continued project that would involve relocating the Pinelands Branch Library and the municipal building. Watson also wishes to continue making necessary repairs to many of the community’s roadways.

“I’m confident that we have the right people in place to do the right thing for the residents of Medford,” Watson said.

After passing the role of mayor onto Watson, who was his former deputy mayor last year, Jeffrey Beenstock said he believes Watson will do a great job serving the community.

“He was the mayor in 2015, so the transition will be very smooth,” Beenstock said. “He’s been involved in everything [town council] has done, and been on council for five years, just like me.”

Councilman Bradley Denn was elected as deputy mayor for 2017.