Bios

Eric Houghtaling

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A lifelong resident of Neptune Township, Eric Houghtaling has consistently given back to the community in which he was not only raised, but where he raised his own family. Now, he’s running for state Assembly to ensure that middle-class families have the same opportunities he had in being able to live, work, and raise a family in Monmouth County.

A current member of Neptune’s Township Committee — and a former mayor — Eric has been at the forefront of efforts to control local property taxes while improving the quality of life for residents.

Eric is a career electrician, and a 38-year member of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local 400, where he has been an elected officer for 14 years, and also a representative to the Monmouth and Ocean Counties Central Labor Council. Through his work with labor, Eric has gained a keen understanding of the issues facing working families, including the need for us to create good jobs at good wages, reining in the cost of education, and keeping our communities affordable for the next generation.

Eric gained his middle-class values from his parents — his father a mechanic, his mother a local school cafeteria worker — who stressed the importance of hard work and family. 

Eric and his wife Linda have three grown children — a son and two daughters — and seven grandchildren.


Joann Downey

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An attorney who has spent her career fighting for the disadvantaged, Joann Downey is running for state Assembly to create a Monmouth County her young daughters will be able to one day proudly call their home.

The daughter of a New Jersey State Trooper, Downey is a former Deputy State Attorney General who prosecuted cases of child abuse and neglect. As an attorney in private practice today, she advocates for accident victims and victims of negligence.

A resident of Freehold Township, Joann sees opportunities to make Monmouth County more affordable for middle-class families, preserve and protect our open spaces and clean water, and ensure the future viability of our roads and transportation network to grow our economy to support new jobs.

Joann received her undergraduate degree from Rutgers University and her law degree from New York Law School. She also holds a Masters’ degree in social work from Boston University.

Joann and her husband Stephen -- a professor of history at Ocean County College -- are parents to two young girls, Siobhan and Saoirse.

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