Lisa Rotte

I have lived in Mullica Hill for almost 3 years choosing Harrison Township as my home over many other areas in New Jersey, Pennsylvania and Delaware. Randy and I fell in love with the sense of community and the small-town feel of this area.  As I’ve relayed on several occasions to my friends, Mullica Hill just called out to us.

My background is dominated by my 26-year journey as the wife of an Army officer. After making 12 moves during our years of military service, Randy and I moved to Mullica Hill in 2014 from the Washington, DC area. I feel that my two great callings are being a mother and living a life of service. I have served in a varied array of occupations during our moves around the world to include as a Preschool teacher, substitute teacher, and a Paraprofessional for the visually impaired. I’ve also worked for the  Marine Corps’ Wounded Warrior Regiment at Quantico, Virginia and for the American Red Cross at various locations around the country.  I find service at the USO’s particularly inspiring and have filled many volunteer capacities at the USO in Virginia, Alaska and here at the Philly Airport. My two most challenging and most rewarding experiences were when I was the Family Readiness Group Leader during my husband’s units deployments in combat operations and my time spent as a hospice volunteer.   Helping families with emotional and financial emergencies and assisting in the coordination to get them reunited with their families on the completion of their deployments was incredibly fulfilling. It was during these times that I found my previous experiences gained from my opportunities at hospice and my many years working at a financial planning firm to be of great assistance.  Prior to deciding to run for the Township Committee, I have invested much of my time in the town by serving on the Recreation Committee for Harrison Township,  helping with the Active Adults in the Township, teaching religious education and serving on the medical board at church assisting the elderly with rides to and from doctors and to grocery stores.

My greatest accomplishment, of course, are my children!  My son is CPT R.T. Rotte and he and his wife CPT Nichole Rotte are both graduates of West Point.  My daughter Maryssa, who resides in Alaska, is a graduate of Christopher Newport University and Essex University of Colchester England.  My youngest daughter, Helena, is a graduate of James Madison University.

Get to Know Lisa

So, Lisa, what’s your story?
Discuss a specific accomplishment you’ve achieved in a previous position that indicates you will thrive in this position.
Tell me how you would make Harrison Township better in your first 30 days.
Tell me about a project or accomplishment that you consider to be the most significant in your career.
Who is your role model, and why?
What was the toughest thing you ever had to do professionally and then personally?
So, Lisa, what’s your story?

I was born at Ft. Stewart Georgia 11 months after my parents were married and then moved to NYC until I was 8. In the summer of my 8th year we moved to Rockland County where I went to Public School, graduated High School, and then attended Marymount College in Tarrytown, NY.

I met my husband, Randy, my first weekend at College- He was a Cadet at West Point. We dated 2 years and then were married. I spent my next 26 years moving 13 times, raising my three children, finding employment in 13 different states, being a full-time Mom, Employee, Officers Wife, and Volunteer.

I have worked in Preschools, different levels of Schools as a Substitute Teacher, After Care Provider, in Special Education for the Visually Impaired, as a Client Contact Specialist for an Investment Company for the Military, as an Office Manager for the Marine Corps MedCell and for a Travel Agency all while being a Room Mom, PTA Volunteer, Chair positions for the Red Cross, USO, Garrison Commands, City Commissions, and Thrift Shops.

I have balanced budgets for organizations, my home, and Military Unit FRG’s, I have fundraised and have been a spokesperson for different organizations, I have had the privilege of being there when people left this earth with Hospice and been there to help bring life into the world when their husband was deployed. I have seen so much and been involved in so much and now I offer this to Harrison Township.

Discuss a specific accomplishment you’ve achieved in a previous position that indicates you will thrive in this position.

When I was the Family Readiness Group Advisor for my husbands’ 600 plus soldier unit in Alaska I volunteered to teach Army Family Team Building courses. With that opportunity, I was asked to lead a small group for the Army Family Action Plan. It was my small group that devised the plan to take the Military GI Bill that was afforded to service members and allow them to give that opportunity to their spouses and/or children.

My group came up with the idea and all the guidelines to accompany the idea. They briefed the General at United States Army Alaska and were chosen to brief the Generals at United States Army Pacific and it snowballed from there to what is now the GI Bill signed into law by Senator Webb. My children utilized this benefit for their college education as do many Military Children. By championing a cause and using everyone’s input as a team we could build something great to afford so many at a very minimal cost and bypass waste.

Tell me how you would make Harrison Township better in your first 30 days.

If elected I would work to make Harrison Township better with three changes. First, I would work with the 4 other Committee Members to come together and prioritize what has been looming to be fixed/repaired in our Township and put those issues in priority order on time relevance and cost basis. Second, I would work with the 4 Committee Members on the 2018 budget to reduce our debt and stay within the perimeters of our budget for spending. Finally, I would have the Committee Meetings televised so whomever wanted to see what occurs at the meetings could either do so during the meeting time or by recording the meeting- transparency and accessibility for all.

Tell me about a project or accomplishment that you consider to be the most significant in your career.

I believe the most significant accomplishment for me was assisting to plan and execute the deployment of my Husband’s Battalion to Iraq, Afghanistan, and Kuwait December 2004. A unit of that size hadn’t been deployed out of Alaska since before WWII. There had been company size deployments and a few soldiers going here and there but never one this large in a very long time.

With my husband and his soldiers, I worked tirelessly to get the families ready for this deployment and assist the Post in implementing programs, dollars, and time to make sure when the soldiers left their families everyone was prepared. I had manuals for each family, emergency sheets for each family, daycare hours allotted for families, mothers nights out with daycare provided, hospital coordination, groups off the Military Post to offer support, and religious support.

I worked to have all imaginable scenarios covered and then I worked with the Post to help institute the re-deployment back to Alaska after the year was over. I am proud to say that my Husband lost no soldier in battle, there were very few incidents with the families while the soldiers were gone, and re-deployment and re-connection with families and their soldiers  went very well. I was named volunteer of the year for Ft Wainwrights and Fairbanks of Alaska in April 2005.

Who is your role model, and why?

I have a few mentors in my life but my role model is Mother Theresa. She did everything out of love and caring for others. She did not care if she looked good or if people liked her- she just wanted to care for people and make this world a better place. I feel like God gave me a similar heart, a servant’s heart. I don’t care about what things mean for me I just want to help, be kind to everyone and know that when I go to bed I made someone’s life a little bit easier this day.

What was the toughest thing you ever had to do professionally and then personally?

The toughest thing I had to do professionally was stand at the Airfield at the Family Readiness Group Advisor with a smile on my face and a stiff back as I watched our soldier’s board planes to the Middle East to fight Terrorists for a year, assure these women that it was going to be OK, and not cry. I desperately wanted to fall into my husband’s arms and be reassured and tell him that I loved him but my job was to be strong, resilient and confident. I did that and when the plane took off and the families went home I went into his empty office and cried for about 15 minutes. Then I pulled my self together and started hour 1 to get all of us through this deployment so I could welcome them home and make my husband and the community proud.

Personally- was when I had to hand my 19-month-old daughter over to a thoracic surgeon to have open heart surgery that was miss-diagnosed by Army doctors. My middle daughter was born with a hole in her heart that was being treated by Army doctors in Texas. When we were days from moving and I was picking up her Echo pictures the cardiologist sat me down and told me he misdiagnosed her condition and I needed to get her to a pediatric cardiologist at our next assignment because she was gravely ill. They admitted her for tests as the movers were loading the truck and then I took her and my son across country where I found a civilian doctor in NYC that saved her life. Dr. Issenberg and Dr. Brodman worked with her the next year to get her strength up and see if the hole would close on its own and then decided she needed surgery. Handing my little girl off to the nurse so she could be made well was the hardest thing I ever had to do.

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