Freeholder Vernell Wright, a native of Camden, South Carolina and a resident of the Vauxhall section of Union Township for more than 50 years, is in the third year of her second term on the Freeholder Board.
In 2016, Freeholder Wright was recognized by the New Jersey Association of Counties with its Maurice Fitzgibbons ‘Freeholder of the Year’ award.
Freeholder Wright earned her BS in Biology from Claflin University in Orangeburg, South Carolina. She subsequently received her Master’s Degree in Education and the Behavioral Sciences and Certification in Educational Administration and Supervision from Newark State College, now Kean University, in Union, New Jersey.
Freeholder Wright’s teaching career began at St. Helena High School in Frogmore, South Carolina in 1955. Freeholder Wright also taught at Collegefields, a college-based program for inner city boys assigned by the courts, located at Newark State College.
In Union, Freeholder Wright began her career as a Title I Teacher at Jefferson School in 1966. Over the next thirty-six years she served in various positions in the Union Public Schools System. In 2005 she began serving as an adjunct faculty supervisor at Kean University until joining the Freeholder Board in 2012.
Since moving to Vauxhall with her family over fifty years ago, Freeholder Wright has continued her commitment to the community, its youth, and senior citizens.
She presently maintains affiliation with numerous community and professional organizations including: New Jersey Principals and Supervisors Association, United Community Center Scholarship Committee, Tri-City Branch – NAACP, First Baptist Church of Vauxhall, Boylan-Haven Mather Academy National Alumnae Association, Vauxhall Historical Society, and the Concerned Citizens of Vauxhall and Vicinity Civic Association.
In her first term on the Freeholder Board (2012-2014), Freeholder Wright served as Chairman of the Policy and Administrative Code Committee, as well as a member of the Homeland Security Committee, the Open Space, Recreation and Historic Preservation Committee, and the Policy and Administrative Code Committee.
She has also served as liaison to several advisory boards including the Advisory Council on Aging, the Senior Citizen & Disabled Resident Transportation Advisory Board, the Commission on the Status of Women, the Youth Services Commission, and the Local Advisory Council on Alcoholism and Drug Abuse, among others.
She is the mother of Patricia Johnson-McArthur and the late Anthony Jerome Wright, whose memory the family commemorates with a scholarship at First Baptist Church. She has three grandchildren, Andrea Johnson, Mark McArthur, and Anthony Wright II.