Who's Westfield's Person of the Year?

TIME magazine named President Obama their person of the year for the second time. Tell us who you think should win from our town!

On Dec. 19, Time magazine named President Obama their Person of the Year, again!

The magazine invited votes on 40 candidates, including the president, Gabby Douglas and Kim Jong Un. Other options included The Mars Rover and the Higgs Boson Particle, Egyptian president Mohamed Morsi, and Apple CEO Tim Cook. But, the president took the title again four years after he first won the award as president-elect in 2008.

But who cares about the same-old, same-old? Who is Westfield’s Person of the Year—the man or woman who, in Timespeak, “most influenced the news this year for better or worse”?

Tell us your pick in the comment section below!

Elizabeth Alterman (Editor) December 26, 2012 at 07:59 PM
Great suggestion, Mitch!
A.John Blake December 26, 2012 at 08:25 PM
Much to Mr.Slater's surprise, I fully agree with his nomination. There are few people who quietly work as hard as Danielle for any charity .She deserves everyone's applause and thanks. A.JohnBlake
WestfieldMike December 26, 2012 at 09:36 PM
Mayor Andy Skibitsky for his tireless efforts representing Westfield during the aftermath of hurricane Sandy.
NoWayMike December 26, 2012 at 10:18 PM
Westfielder of The Year for doing his job? How did he represent Westfield during the aftermath of hurricane Sandy? I can think of many others that DESERVE the award. Let me guess WestfieldMike, the Mayor's neighbor? Close friend? Donor? He has about as much of a chance being named Westfielder of The Year as Dolan does being named Educator of The Year.
Bryce Manning December 26, 2012 at 11:05 PM
Alec Friedlander. The man has singlehandedly changed the Westfield community for the better. Although he is unknown to many he has touched the lives of many Westfield residents. The way he conducts himself around the Westfield community is that of someone we all should strive to be one day. If he does not win there is something wrong with this title. He has taken his mothers charm and smile, and combined it with his fathers charisma and mature attitude to make one stellar man. A true gentleman and scholar of the Westfield community
Marshall Hopp December 26, 2012 at 11:18 PM
I cannot agree with Bryce more. Alec Friedlander is a true gentleman and scholar of the Westfield community. He was in my graduating class and I did not know him much at the time. I truly did miss out on quite the guy. However, after graduation I got the pleasure to meet him over coffee and discuss his life after high school. Not only is he a standout student at UMD but he is president of his dorm, treasurer of his fraternity, active volunteer and lastly a dedicated tutor to inner city kids in Baltimore. If it were not for this quick coffee date I would not have gotten the pleasure of truly knowing this gentle giant. I do my best to keep in touch with him but at times it can be difficult because he is so busy. If you see this big Al give me a call!
Gene Tintley December 26, 2012 at 11:19 PM
Bryce I would have to agree. I will begin with a tiny anecdote. I remember once these kids thought it would be funny to write on my Mazda with some chalk. It was all in good fun, but once I washed the chalk off the paint had been scratched by the chalk. You can imagine I was FUMING! Well, Alec went with me down to the shop over on South Ave, and we fixed her up alright. It turned out to be an all day job, but this is just a tiny glimpse of this man's attitude. Such selflessness is probably so normal to him that he probably does not even remember it as a day that stands out in his life. Alec Friedlander has been a figurehead in Westfield for years now and I think its time for some recognition, it it not? Not only is he a gentleman and a scholar, but a jolly good fellow at that. He is a stand-out in this community with his selflessness. I just see it as an injustice for any other member of the community to receive this title.
Bryson December 26, 2012 at 11:20 PM
I second Alec Friedlander. When the hurricane hit, he invited tons of his neighbors into his home, and provided power for many houses that were hit on his block. Alec also saved a dog from the wind, found his owner, and bought the dog a new collar/ new Christmas sweater. Mr. Friedlander exemplifies all the qualities that define a good Westfield resident. He is the epitomization of a model citizen; he demonstrates responsibility and kindness in all that he does .
Johnny Ristolio December 26, 2012 at 11:32 PM
Al! Oh boy Al. This guy is too much. I remember when one of my good friends Stevie didn't know how to ride a bike. Well, Al didn't judge him one bit. I mean all of us guys, we were laughing out heads off, you know? Well Al said "why don't you come on over and I'll teach you? You'll be a wiz in no time." Wouldn't you know we saw Stevie zooming around Tamaques on his bike like a champ! Hah, what a guy. Funny, haven't seen him for awhile. I always wonder what that guy is up to.
Eric Weiss December 26, 2012 at 11:37 PM
Alec is a great guy. I second him for this designation. I remember a time he paid for a cab for a bunch of kids who had been drinking so they wouldnt get behind the wheel of a car. We can only guess how many lives he saved that night. When my friend's mom died, he was a huge comfort to her. The amazing thing is if you ask Alec whether he deserves an award like this, he would flat out deny it. His humility is truly inspiring. He probably wouldn't even acknowledge all the good deeds he has done over the years.
Bryce Manning December 26, 2012 at 11:38 PM
Wow! Johnny! I remember that! Nothing beat our faces when good old Al taught Stevie how to ride his bike! I cannot believe he is finally getting the praise he deserves. A true legend, my friend Al!
Dave Grayson December 26, 2012 at 11:41 PM
I'd just like to put down another vote for Alec Friedlander. He's one of the most honest people I know, and he's dedicated to his friends, family, and community. Alec embodies the hard-working culture that makes a town strong. I can still remember when we were kids, and I'd go around town trying to make a buck shoveling snow. I asked Alec to come with me sometimes, but he was always too busy shoveling at elderly Westfield residents' homes for free. Alec's grown up to have that same kind of generosity and respect for Westfield, and I'd like to show that we have the same kind of respect for him.
Kanye West December 27, 2012 at 12:49 AM
I suggest Gil Engelke he spends countless hours coaching kids and many a Thursday night entertaining at Dillons.
Dirk Diggler December 27, 2012 at 12:57 AM
I went out of my after reading all these comments to meet up with my old time friend Alec David Friedlander to see what he's up to these days and see if he is truly worthy of "Westfield Man of the Year." I can without hesitation say that he is without a doubt our man for this title. I am typing this comment as I sit across the table from him at the Westfield Starbucks. He walks in and all the baristas greet Alec with high praises. As I am typing this Alec is looking into my eyes with his big charming eyes. I cannot help but smile back at him. #Alec4ManOfTheYear
Tanner Worpleberg December 27, 2012 at 01:00 AM
Hey guys its Tanner here. I know there's all this hubbub about this Alex guy, but I mean what has he really done? Helped some guy named Stevie ride a bike... Let people stay in his house? Come on this guy hasn't done diddly SQUAT.
DWCer December 27, 2012 at 01:18 AM
Sherry Cronin of the Westfield Downtown Corp. gets my vote. If it weren't for her inviting Mayor Skibitty to all those new business ribbon cutting ceremonies, nobody would know who the mayor is.
Andrew Wollack December 27, 2012 at 01:49 AM
Alec Friedlander should be considered. I plead for the judge of this competition to contact Alec. He is a special man and anybody who meets him will realize that instantly.
TraderJohn's December 27, 2012 at 01:55 AM
A rush of excitement came over me as I saw this. Mr. Friedlander is a tireless volunteer; he donates his time like most of us donate our dirty old clothes.
Sillywfgirl December 27, 2012 at 01:59 AM
Alec is an ex-boyfriend of mine. I wasn't the best girlfriend, but he always was true gentleman. Let's get more guys like this walking the streets of Westfield!
Larry Hoover December 27, 2012 at 02:12 AM
Tanner are you kidding me?! This Alec guy is on a whole new level. I'm sure we all remember early September when that volcano hit Westfield? And who was it that ate all the lava so it couldn't hurt people, and then use his brute strength to move the volcano? Holy smokes, Westfield! It was Alec!! And who could forget when Bane came to our city, pledging to destroy it, and "bring it to ashes"? If it weren't for Alec's determination, Bane would be ruling our city. Rather, Alec was willing to fly Bane's nuclear bomb away, leaving Westfield under the gracious rule of Commissioner Jim Gordon and overlord Ben Kraus. ALL HAIL ALEC #GetOutHisFace #AlecGetsMoney
Bryce Manning December 27, 2012 at 04:03 AM
All jokes aside Alec is a really great man and these jokes should not be held against him for Westfield Person of the Year
Tami Thompson December 27, 2012 at 04:40 AM
Alec Friedlander is a fantastic leader of the youth of this community. He's such a cool dude! ;)
John Gillman December 27, 2012 at 06:49 AM
I'm not sure whether or not all these comments are from jokesters or what but I actually had the pleasure of growing up in the Radley Court neighborhood with Alec Friedlander. He was always a very selfless boy, and he has grown to become the type of man that exemplifies the spirit of Westfield. I would like nothing more than to have him win this award.
Bryce Manning December 27, 2012 at 06:56 AM
Thanks John for your honesty. I hope that Alec still wins and the patch can see past some of this humor! Alec is the man for this title!
Lucas Turner Vickler December 28, 2012 at 04:59 AM
AL! Oh AL! I remember in Drama class in 9th grade, I would always be embarrassed to go up on stage. You see, Alec and I were in the class together, and him being the theater aficionado would always lend me a helping hand. Boy that kid made me crack up. In all seriousness though it comes surprising to me that some would come on this website and joke about Alec and his legitimacy for the title. You know, when I was going through high school, I wasn't really well known. Timidly walking into the cafeteria not knowing anyone, Alec would come and tell me to sit down. Boy, you know how you watch some of those movies where there's that high school quarterback that wins the championship, gets good grades, and is dating that beautiful cheerleader? Gosh, I thought Alec was just like that (couldn't really throw a great football though!). Anyway, I would like to refrain from anymore digression. Alec took his attitude from high school with him through his future endeavors. I recall seeing him in town throughout the summer, I would always ask him what he was up to, he would explain he was taking off from his summer job (where he was earning money) in order to volunteer during the week. I hate to boast about this guy's selflessness because it seems like a broken record on this website, but I mean, I love the guy. Alec give me a call, or a text from one of those wackadoo crazy technology phones people got these days. Miss the stuff we used to do!
Ibro Kranjic December 28, 2012 at 05:08 AM
You know my English not best, Alec was great! Never once he show me bad time. I was in class 3rd Period with him I recall. He always give good answer and never forgot to raise hand. I came by website, and no I have not much to say. Just saw his name and want tell yes he is a good! I hope title becomes his, and I know Alec will keep up good!
J B December 28, 2012 at 08:28 PM
I worked with Alec this summer at the JCC day camp and he was one of the best counselors at the camp. He was the rare combination of respecting the rules and the kids loving him. It's probably rare for someone so young to be named the Person of the Year, but if anyone receives that distinction, it should be him.
Tamara Rine January 03, 2013 at 04:39 AM
I have to admit Alec truly represents the selflessness that is vital for Westfield to survive. When we were gym class I had difficulty playing volleyball, each time I attempted to hit the ball I swung and missed - it was embarrassing to say the least. After countless failed attempts Alec came over to show we how to hit the ball. While it was a small attempt to help an athletically challenged girl, it is something that touched my heart. #ALEC4MANOFTHEYEAR
Marcos Vanderbosh January 06, 2013 at 06:22 PM
While there are a few people I could conceive of winning this prize, the one who stands out most to me would have to be Alec Friedlander. The man truly exemplifies what it means to be an outstanding member of the community. When I met Alec I was in Middle school, and Alec was in highschool. Originally I was worried that he would look down on me for being so young when he seemed SO cool. But no sir, not Alec, soon we were great friends. I cherish those memories of playing jeopardy while drinking chocolate milk. His presence in my life truly brought about a boost in my self confidence and showed me how to be myself. He was a great role model from whom I learned so much. One time I was being stupid and got stranded at a party...and you know who i called? That's right...ALEC. Because I knew he would be selfless enough to leave his friends on a Saturday night to pick up a dorky younger kid. ALEC FOR PERSON OF THE YEAR!
Bryan Lazzaro August 09, 2013 at 03:53 PM
Alec Friedlander is by far the person of the year in Westfield. I have never known a man with more integrity and heart. Truly an upstanding citizen and a strong leader. I can't think of anyone more deserving.


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