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Alum Wayne DeAngelo's Path to Legislature Begins at MCCC

5/23/11


West Windsor, N.J. - When Wayne DeAngelo '87 (Electronics Engineering Technology) enrolled at Mercer in 1983 after graduating from Steinert High School, he had some things to figure out - such as what he wanted to do with his life. According to DeAngelo, Mercer County Community College proved the perfect place to do just that.

Starting off part-time, DeAngelo took a variety of classes over several years at the college. But, when he took his first Electronics Engineering Technology course, he quickly realized this was something he was both good at and enjoyed.

He also got active at the student radio station, WMCC. As a station disk jockey, he got his first taste of reaching out and connecting with the public. It was a rewarding and energizing experience and one that would figure into his future far more than he could have known at the time.

With his newly acquired technical skills, DeAngelo became an apprentice with the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) Local 269. His training with the union was demanding, including 40 hours per week on the job and two nights in class. "Over a five-year period, apprentices are expected to complete 10,000 hours on the job and 1,000 in the classroom," he explained.

Wayne DeAngleo '87

DeAngelo was committed to the process and eventually earned his journeyman electrician certification. Far more than a basic electrician, DeAngelo explains that journeymen electricians are certified installers for complex systems such as fire alarm systems in corporate settings and emergency call systems in hospitals. He also is certified to carry out audio and video installations.

In more recent years, DeAngelo has largely balanced his hands-on work with work in the public sector. For the past 12 years, he has served as the assistant business manager for IBEW Local 269, which counts 1200 members throughout Central New Jersey and Bucks County, Pa. He also serves as president of the Mercer-Burlington County Building and Construction Trades, which promotes and supports men and women in skilled labor unions.

DeAngelo also got active in local government. A lifelong Hamilton resident, he first served on the Hamilton Township Zoning Board, then on the Town Council and most recently on the Planning Board.

And, broadening his sights even further, in 2007, DeAngelo ran for state public office and was elected to the New Jersey General Assembly for the 14th Legislative District, where he now serves as Deputy Speaker Pro Tempore. His professional experience as an electrician and labor union leader has provided critical understanding of issues in his role as vice chair of the Assembly Telecommunications and Utilities Committee and as a member of the Assembly Labor Committee.

DeAngelo's recently sponsored bills include one that provides for mail-in voting in general elections, another that creates a "one-stop shopping" online database for public contracts, and a third designed to control employer taxes and provide assistance to the unemployed. The Governor recently signed into law measures sponsored by DeAngelo to improve the state's online system to handle unemployment claims and to streamline access to orders issued by the Board of Public Utilities affecting telephone, cable and utility services for consumers.

DeAngelo is gratified that his career track has turned in the direction of public service, where "I am able to have a broader impact on the lives of New Jersey's citizens." DeAngelo knows the importance of reaching out to those in need in his community and maintain strong ties to MCCC and its students.

He traces his present success and service to his start at Mercer. "It's a great school for everyone - for high school graduates and returning adult students, for those who know what they want to do and those who still need to figure it out. At Mercer, you will get the mentoring you need."

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