Home>Campaigns>Farmer and ex-basketball star, 24, seeks Sussex County Commissioner seat

Jack DeGroot. (Photo: Jack DeGroot for Commissioner).

Farmer and ex-basketball star, 24, seeks Sussex County Commissioner seat

Jack DeGroot files to take on incumbent Herb Yardley in GOP primary

By David Wildstein, March 18 2023 3:58 pm

A 24-year-old farmer from Wantage will seek the Republican nomination for Sussex County Commissioner in the June primary, challenging Herbert Yardley (R-Stillwater), 72, a two-term incumbent.

Jack DeGroot worked as an intern in the office of New Hampshire Gov. Christopher Sununu as a graduate student at the University of New Hampshire, where he is pursuing a master’s degree in statistics.  He graduated from High Point Regional High School in 2017, the same year Yardley was elected to the Board of Freeholders, and was the first 1,000-point scorer there in a decade.  He played college basketball at Marywood University.

“I am deeply committed to preserving our rich agricultural heritage and believe that supporting our local agriculture industry is crucial,” DeGroot stated. “When elected as the next Sussex County Commissioner, I will advise, promote, and provide assurance that we will maintain and protect our farmland and be the voice of Sussex County agriculture to the rest of the state.”

A former Stillwater mayor and firefighter, Yardley spent nearly four decades as a public health official in several municipalities.

Sussex has no organization lines, and Democrats have not won a countywide election since Howard Burrell captured a freeholder seat in 1999.

The June 6 primary might also decide if there will be another vacancy on the Sussex County Board of Commissioners.  If Dawn Fantasia wins her race for the State Assembly,  there will be a special election convention in January or February to fill her seat.

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