FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE, September 14, 2001
CONTACT: Michael Murray, 908-527-4419, or
D.W. Krauskopf, 908-527-4744


Employee of the Month

The Union County Board of Chosen Freeholders and County Manager Michael J. Lapolla named Michael Swayze Employee of the Month for June for his dedication to providing assistance to the low-income residents of the County for the past 29 years.

"While serving as the Home Energy Assistance Program Coordinator and supervising the county social workers Michael founded the NJ SHARES Program," said Freeholder Chairman Alexander Mirabella. "Michael is known as the 'energy expert' in the County and around the state."

NJ SHARES stands for the New Jersey Statewide Heating Assistance Referral Services. It is a non-profit statewide fuel fund providing temporary assistance to New Jersey households. The program's eligibility criteria is not based on income but on the financial hardship of the applicant. This fund has awarded over $16 million to people who have needed help with their utility bills.

Swayze maintains the New Jersey Community Resources web site that his co-workers regularly use for information and referrals; he is the founder and chairman of the New Jersey Low Income Energy Network and is the web master for the Air Force Academy Parent's Association of New Jersey.

Swayze and his wife Shelby Grifo have three children, Ian, Sasha and Austin.

"The Employee of the Month Recognition Program is a way to recognize and reward employees for valuable contributions and accomplishments, professional growth and quality performance," Union County Manager Lapolla said. Each employee honored receives a plaque from the County Manager, a Resolution from the Freeholder Board and a day off from work.

"Michael has combined his passion to help people and his work experience and skill to serve his community. We are pleased to recognize him as our Employee of the Month for June," Lapolla added.