Dr. Angela R. Garretson

Union County Commissioner Dr. Angela Garretson’s government experience spans over 19 years, having served as a school board member, councilwoman at large, and Mayor of Hillside.  She is serving in her second term on the Union County Board of Commissioners, and was instrumental in changing the title of Freeholder to Commissioner statewide in 2021.

Dr. Garretson is an advocate for citizen engagement, economic stability, public safety, social justice, health, education and equity and inclusion through her service on Commissioner Committees and as liaison to Advisory Boards, including the Advisory Board on the Status of Minorities. Dedicated to building coalitions statewide, Garretson is the Board of Commissioners’ designee to the New Jersey Association of Counties, where she co-founded NJ19, the statewide County Black Caucus. 

As a Commissioner during the COVID-19 pandemic, Dr. Garretson rallied state and federal resources for recovery efforts and reinvestments that empowered residents, businesses and communities. Her contributions included advocacy that led to federal funding through the American Rescue Plan, the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law and other federal programs that will benefit Union County for generations. Dr. Garretson was also a member of the New Jersey team that achieved a finalist level in the Build Back Better Regional Challenge, an industry and workforce development competition for building resilient economies.

Dr. Garretson began her professional career in higher education at the Rutgers University Eagleton Institute of Politics. She continues to work in academia and previously served as a Legislative Aide in the New Jersey General Assembly and various campaigns.

Currently, she is the Chief External Affairs Officer in the Office of the President of the New Jersey Institute of Technology, where she oversees local, state and federal engagement in the University’s global research and development. She has also presided over landmark studies detailing the University’s $2.8 billion annual impact on the New Jersey economy.

Among numerous awards and recognitions, Dr. Garretson has been named one of the Top 50 Women in Business by NJBIZ, an Influencer of Color by ROI-NJ, and a member of the list of Who’s Who in America.

Dr. Garretson graduated from Montclair Kimberley Academy, Syracuse University (B.S), Rutgers University (MPA with honors), and Rutgers and NJIT (Ph.D. joint doctoral program).  She is a member of the Alpha Kappa Alpha, Sorority Inc., Omega Psi Omega Chapter in Elizabeth, and the National Sorority of Phi Delta Kappa, Inc. Delta Pi Chapter in Hillside.  She and her family reside in Hillside.

Contact the Commissioner

Office Phone Number: 908-527-4109

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