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Tim Hillmann, a deputy chief of staff to Gov. Phil Murphy, with his father, former Star-Ledger political editor and journalism legend Fred Hillmann. (Photo: Facebook.)

Hillmann will be Murphy’s new deputy chief of staff

Ex-Menendez aide will replace DeLamater

By David Wildstein, March 12 2021 4:02 pm

Tim Hillmann will become Gov. Phil Murphy’s new deputy chief of staff for intergovernmental affairs, the New Jersey Globe has learned.

He will replace Mike DeLamater, who is leaving the governor’s office.

Hillmann spent nearly nine years as an aide to U.S. Senator Bob Menendez before joining Murphy’s staff as appointments director in 2019.

“Tim is a huge asset to the Governor’s office, and this is a well-earned promotion,” said one his mentors, Michael Soliman, who hired him for his first job in politics.  “From his time working for Senator Menendez and beyond, he has built relationships throughout the state that are crucial for his new role.”

Delamater worked on Murphy’s 2017 campaign after serving as legislative director for Democratic lawmakers in the 38th district.

He was in the news last fall after his positive Covid test led to Murphy abruptly leaving a governmental event in South Jersey and being forced to self-quarantine.  Other Murphy staffers also spent time in quarantine as a result of the interaction with Delamater.

Hillmann descends from New Jersey royalty: his father, Fred Hillmann, was the chief political reporter for the Star-Ledger during a long-forgotten era when the state’s elite awoke early on Sunday mornings to read columns written by journalists like Hillmann, Jim McQueeny and David Wald.

Fred Hillman later served as a top aide to U.S. Senator Bill Bradley and Senate Majority Communications Director.

His mother is also well-known in political circles: Tracie DeSarno is a prominent government relations executive.

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