Maria Pellerano Has Big Shoes to Fill as President of 2nd Ward Crime Watch

NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ – Morris Kafka is out as President of New Brunswick's most active crime watch programs, and longtime 2nd Ward resident Maria Pellerano is in.  Tonight, she will preside over her first meeting as President, the first time in 18 years Kafka will not lead the group.

The change comes amidst a crime wave plaguing the area served by the organization.  Two police-involved shootings also occurred in the ward during the past six months.

Kafka had been looking to hand over the reigns to the organization for several years, and Pellerano gave him the opportunity when she volunteered to step up and assume the responsibilities of leading the group before the body's January 31 election.

Pellerano was elected at the group's January 31 meeting, along with new Vice President Phyllis Koenig, who will serve as co-Secretary along with Marge Kerber, and treasurer Yana Hernandez.

The organization has meetings open to the public every fourth Monday at 7:30pm in the New Brunswick Free Public Library.  New Brunswick Police Detective Harry Hudson and former police director Michael Beltranena attend the first half of the meeting to hear resident concerns regarding crime and police.

Editor at New Brunswick Today | 732-993-9697 |

Charlie is the founder and editor of New Brunswick Today, and the winner of the Awbrey Award for Community-Oriented Local Journalism. He is a proud Rutgers University journalism graduate and a community organizer, and was an independent candidate for Mayor of New Brunswick in 2018.