They started as the equivalent of Trenton tadpoles; kids with cowlicks carrying other people’s briefcases, who at some point sprouted legs, wriggled out of the statehouse crevices and subterranean passageways, and made for the dry land of their own political designs. They are chiefs of staff turned leaders in their own right.
Last week, three of them expanded their powers, stepping out of the hula hoops of those elder others who brought them along to this point and now nudge them forward into the next stage of existence.
They are Shariq Ahmad, chief of staff to Assemblyman Robert Karabinchak, who became chairman of the Edison Democratic Committee; Marshall Spevak, chief of staff to Assemblyman Vince Mazzeo, who became vice chairman of the Cherry Hill Democratic Committee; and Tony Teixeria, chief of staff to state Senator Ray Lesniak, who became chair of the Elizabeth Democratic Committee.
It made InsiderNJ consider some of those past (and maybe continuing) COS performers who have moved into new roles in their careers.
Take a look at this:
Peter Cammarano (COS to Acting Governor and Senator Dick Codey): Partner, Cammarano, Layton & Bombardieri Partners, LLC (CLB Partners) is a full-service, bipartisan Trenton-based government relations firm.
Mo Butler (COS to former Newark Mayor Cory Booker): Managing Director at Mercury Public Affairs.
Julie Diaz (COS to Assemblywoman Annette Quijano): Political Director of SEIU 32BJ.
Bruce Sisler (COS to Assemblyman Tony Bucco): Morris Twp. Mayor.
Andre Sayegh (COS to former state Senator John Girgenti): Paterson Councilman.
AJ Sabath (former COS to state Senator Codey): Partner and co-founder of Advocacy and Management Group.)
Brian P. Stack (COS to former Assemblyman Jose Arango [now chairman of the Hudson GOP]): State Senator representing the 33rd District; Mayor of Union City.
Christina Zuk (COS to former state Senator Barbara Buono): Government Affairs Professional with Princeton Public Affairs.
David Bander (Former COS to state Senator Linda Greenstein): Plainsboro Committeeman and an associate at Mets, Schiro, and McGovern in Woodbridge.
Nicholas Chiaravalloti (COS to former Assemblyman/Speaker Joe Doria): Assemblyman representing the 31st District.
Troy Singleton (COS to former Assemblyman/Speaker Joe Roberts): Assemblyman representing the 7th District, running for the state senate seat.
Jamel Holley (COS to former Assemblyman Neil Cohen): Assemblyman representing the 20th District; Director of Public Works, City of Irvington.
Pete Oneglia (COS to former Assemblyman Carmelo Garcia): General Manager for InsiderNJ.
Carol Murphy (former COS to state Senator Linda Greenstein; COS to Assemblywoman Gabriela Mosquera): Running for an Assembly seat in LD7.
Wayne Zitt (COS to Assemblywoman Angelica Jimenez): Guttenberg Councilman.
Keith Loughlin (COS to Assembly Republican Leader Jon Bramnick): Councilman, Westfield.
Chris James (COS to former Speaker Sheila Oliver): East Orange Councilman, Executive Director of the Democratic State Committee and founding CEO of James Strategy Group.
Justin Shoham (Former COS to Assemblyman Raj Mukherji): Founding CEO of Enigma Consulting.
Jonathan Chebra (former COS to Assemblyman Herb Conaway): Director of Government Relations and Policy at the NJ Hospital Association; chair of the Bordentown Democrats.
Charles Burton (former COS to Assemblyman John Wisniewski): Director of Government Affairs at the Advocacy and Management Group.
Kevin O’Toole (COS to former Essex County Executive Jim Treffinger): State Senator from the 4oth Legislative District.
Al Barlas (COS to O’Toole): Chairman of the Essex County GOP.
Alison Murphy (COS to state Senator Jeff Van Drew): On the ballot in the Democratic Primary earlier this month for a state committee seat. she won.