Hometown: Whippany, N.J.
Birthday: May 25, 1986
Bio: Jake has been covering towns in New Jersey since 2007. He has a journalism degree from The College of New Jersey and worked at the Daily Record, Home News Tribune, Courier News and The Times of Trenton before coming to Patch in August 2011.
He loves hearing from readers and sources.
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 our editors 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 our beliefs are on the record will cause us 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 believe it's important for residents to exercise their rights, stay informed, vote and run for office. I am a huge fan of the First Amendment.
Are you registered with a certain party?
No. On the one hand, I think it's important to vote in primaries, which is where a lot of the political action is. On the other hand, I'm more comfortable keeping a distance from the parties whose members I cover. Partisan politics does not impress me much and sometimes even terrifies me.
In 2008, I registered as a Democrat so I could vote in the presidential primary, but later unaffiliated after I came to regret registering for the above reasons.
How religious would you consider yourself?
I believe churches fulfill important social and spiritual needs. My grandfather was a Methodist minister. I was raised Roman Catholic. Other than that, my religious beliefs are not clearly defined as of this writing. I believe the founders got it right when they decided, "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof." As I said before, I am a huge fan of the First Amendment.
Local Hot-Button Issues
What do you think are the most important issues facing the community?
Turf field referendum, Lake Valhalla Club zoning board application, elections, anything else affecting schools, quality of life, property values, tax rates and businesses in town
Where do you stand on each of these issues?
My stance is that it should be easy for residents to know what is going on. Information should be readily available and clearly explained.