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Ryan Peters (politician)

Ryan Peters (born c. 1982) is an American Republican Party politician who has represented the 8th Legislative District in the New Jersey General Assembly since January 9, 2018.[2] He replaced Maria Rodriguez-Gregg, who did not run for re-election to the Assembly. Peters had previously served on the Burlington County Board of Chosen Freeholders, and was an attorney and Navy SEAL before running for office.

Ryan Peters
Member of the New Jersey Assembly from the 8th Legislative District
Assumed office
January 9, 2018
Serving with Joe Howarth
Preceded byMaria Rodriguez-Gregg
Member of the Burlington County Board of Chosen Freeholders
In office
January 4, 2016 – January 9, 2018
Preceded byAimee Belgard [1]
Succeeded byLinda Hughes
Personal details
Political partyRepublican
Spouse(s)Stacy Peters
ResidenceHainesport Township, New Jersey
Alma materUnited States Naval Academy
Rutgers School of Law–Camden[2]
WebsiteLegislative Website

Early lifeEdit

A resident of Hainesport Township, Peters is a graduate of Holy Cross High School.[3] Peters played soccer with the varsity team and graduated from the United States Naval Academy with a bachelor of science degree in political science; he earned a juris doctor degree from Rutgers School of Law–Camden in 2012, where he was president of the Student Bar Association and edited the Rutgers Journal of Law and Religion.[2][3] An attorney with the firm of Pepper Hamilton, Peters specializes in money laundering compliance.[4] Peters served as a Navy SEAL in the United States Navy since 2004, attaining the rank of Lieutenant Commander, and continues service in the United States Navy Reserve.[2][4]

Burlington County Board of Chosen FreeholdersEdit

Before taking office in the Assembly, Peters had served since 2016 on the Burlington County Board of Chosen Freeholders.[2] As a freeholder, Peters served on the board's Personnel and Military Affairs committees and was appointed as the liaison to the county's Department of Public Safety and to the Burlington County Prosecutor’s Office.[4] When he was sworn in as freeholder in 2016 together with his running mate Kate Gibbs, they gave the county the state's youngest freeholder board, with Peters being 33 years old and Gibbs 29.[5]

New Jersey AssemblyEdit

In September 2017, Peters was chosen by the Burlington County Republican Committee to run for the Assembly seat after two-term incumbent Maria Rodriguez-Gregg deciding against running for election after an incident earlier that year in which police thought that she was driving under the influence following a traffic accident.[4] In the November 2017 general election, Peters (with 28,671 votes; 25.0% of all ballots cast) and his running mate, incumbent Joe Howarth (with 28,841; 25.1%), defeated Democratic challengers Joanne Schwartz (28,321; 24.7%) and Maryann Merlino (28,196; 24.6%) to win both Assembly seats from the district for the Republicans.[6] Of all 40 districts, the race in the 8th District was the closest in the state, with 650 votes separating the first and fourth vote-getters.[7] With Joanne Schwartz, the closest Democratic candidate 350 votes behind Peters for the second seat from the district, the Democratic Party had considered filing for a recount; Peters stepped down from the Board of Chosen Freeholders, leaving Republicans to fill the seat with a candidate who could run in the November 2018 general election with fellow incumbent Kate Gibbs, with control of the board in the balance.[8] In January 2018, former freeholder Linda Hughes was selected to fill the seat vacated by Peters when he took office in the Assembly.[9]


  • Appropriations
  • Financial Institutions and Insurance
  • State and Local Government

District 8Edit

Each of the 40 districts in the New Jersey Legislature has one representative in the New Jersey Senate and two members in the New Jersey General Assembly. The other representatives from the 8th District for the 218th Legislature are:[10][11]

Awards and honorsEdit

In July 2018, Peters was included in InsiderNJ's list of Millennials on the Rise.[12]

Electoral HistoryEdit


New Jersey general election, 2017[13]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Republican Joe Howarth 28,841 25.1   24.8
Republican Ryan Peters 28,671 25.0   25.1
Democratic Joanne Schwartz 28,321 24.7 N/A
Democratic Maryann Merlino 28,196 24.6 N/A
No Status Quo Ryan T. Calhoun 753 0.7 N/A
Total votes 114,782 100.0


  1. ^ "Board of Chosen Freeholders". Wayback Machine. Retrieved 31 March 2019.
  2. ^ a b c d e Legislative web page, New Jersey Legislature. Accessed January 16, 2018.
  3. ^ a b Ryan Peters, Burlington County, New Jersey, backed up by the Internet Archive as of August 2, 2016. Accessed January 19, 2018. "Peters received his J.D., cum laude, from Rutgers School of Law in Camden in 2012, where he was editor-in-chief of the Rutgers Journal of Law and Religion, President of the Student Bar Association, and a Legislative Fellow at the Eagleton Institute of Politics. After graduating from Holy Cross High School in Delran, Peters received a B.S. in political science, cum laude, from the United States Naval Academy in 2004 where was the captain of the Division I varsity soccer team and a Fellow at the Naval Academy Foreign Affairs Conference."
  4. ^ a b c d Levinsky, David. "Burlington County Freeholder Ryan Peters picked to run for 8th District Assembly seat", Burlington County Times, September 6, 2017. Accessed January 19, 2018. "Burlington County Freeholder Ryan Peters likely didn’t expect to have to do much campaigning this fall, since his seat on the county board isn’t up for re-election until next year. That changed Wednesday after the Hainesport resident was picked by the Burlington County Republican Committee to replace Assemblywoman Maria Rodriguez-Gregg on the party’s 8th Legislative District ticket.... But she announced last week that she would not run for re-election, as she continues to fight charges of driving under the influence and obstruction, stemming from an April accident in which her vehicle was rear-ended on Route 73 at Fellowship Road in Mount Laurel."
  5. ^ Ronaldson, Tim. "New freeholders sworn in at Burlington County Freeholders reorganization meeting", Mt. Laurel Sun, January 6, 2016. Accessed January 19, 2018. "Pledging a 2016 property tax reduction while expanding services for those in need, Kate Gibbs and Ryan Peters were sworn in on Jan. 4 as new members of the Burlington County Board of Chosen Freeholders.... Gibbs, 29, and Peters, 33, had not previously held elected office. Upon her swearing in, Gibbs has officially become the youngest female Freeholder serving in the state of New Jersey. With the addition of Gibbs and Peters, Burlington County now boasts the youngest freeholder board in the State."
  6. ^ Official List Candidates for General Assembly For General Election 11/07/2017 Election, New Jersey Department of State, dated November 29, 2017. Accessed January 16, 2018.
  7. ^ Symons,Michael. "NJ’s governor’s race cost $79 million but had lowest turnout ever", WKXW, November 29, 2017. Accessed January 19, 2018. "Democrats won 54 of the 80 Assembly seats. The closest race was in the 8th District, where Republicans Joe Howarth and Ryan Peters defeated Democrats Joanne Schwartz and Maryann Merlino – and all four finished with between 28,196 and 28,841 votes."
  8. ^ Levinsky, David. Republicans Howarth, Peters still lead in 8th District race after provisional ballot count", Burlington County Times, November 17, 2017. Accessed January 19, 2018. "The official vote count has the incumbent Howarth and Peters, who currently serves as a Burlington County Freeholder, winning the contest for the district Assembly seats with 28,841 and 28,671 votes respectively. Schwartz finished a close third with 28,321 votes — just 350 shy of Peters — followed by Merlino with 28,196. The votes have been counted and Republicans Joe Howarth and Ryan Peters have emerged as the winners of the razor-tight 8th District Assembly race. At least for now. Democrats Joanne Schwartz and Mary Ann Merlino have not ruled out asking for a recount."
  9. ^ Levinsky, David. "Burlington County GOP names Linda Hughes to fill unexpired freeholder term", Burlington County Times, January 5, 2018. Accessed January 19, 2018. "Linda Hughes, of Evesham, was sworn back into office Friday evening after the Burlington County Republican Committee named her to fill the seat of departing Republican Ryan Peters, who is stepping down from the Freeholder board after winning election the state Assembly."
  10. ^ Legislative Roster 2018-2019 Session, New Jersey Legislature. Accessed January 18, 2018.
  11. ^ District 8 Legislators, New Jersey Legislature. Accessed January 18, 2018.
  12. ^ Pizarro, Max (July 23, 2018). "InsiderNJ's THE 2018 INSIDER 100: MILLENNIALS HERE THEY COME!" (PDF). Retrieved July 23, 2018.
  13. ^ "2017-official-general-election-results-general-assembly.pdf" (PDF). New Jersey Secretary of State. Retrieved 31 March 2019.
New Jersey General Assembly
Preceded by
Maria Rodriguez-Gregg
Member of the New Jersey General Assembly for the 8th District
January 9, 2018 – present
With: Joe Howarth
Succeeded by