Woman at Center of Bridgegate Scandal Worked in Midland Park
By Rebecca K. Abma
On Wednesday, The Record broke the news story that members of Governor Chris Christie's administration were behind a four-day traffic jam in Fort Lee motivated by political retribution. Christie announced Kelly's termination at a news conference on Thursday.
The emails, posted below, shows Kelly sparked the string of events with an email to David Wildstein at the Port Authority, "Time for some traffic problems in Fort Lee." As a result, two lanes to the George Washington Bridge were closed for four days, snarling traffic for hours.
Also in the emails, Kelly and Wildstein exchange messages while Kelly was online at former Midland Park Mayor Bill Van Dyke's wake on Aug. 30. Wildstein states, "No sarcasm here, I genuinely liked Bill Van Dyke. Nice guy and one of the easiest candidates I ever had."
Kelly, 41 of Ramsey, served as Russo's chief of staff in 2002. She joined the Christie administration in 2010 as direct of legislative relations, overseeing the administration's interactions with the State Legislator. She moved up to Director of Intergovernmental and Legislative Affairs, where she was in charge of the administration's outreach efforts to government officials and community organizations. Last April she was promoted to Deputy Chief of Staff for Legislative and Intergovernmental Affairs, at a salary of $114,000.
She was president of the Ramsey Republican Club from 2005 through 2011 and has served on local and county Republican organizations. She is married to Joseph Patrick Kelly and has four children.
Read the full emails that sparked the scandal, below.