Steve Rovell

Steve Rovell to Challenge Mayor Michael Melham in the Belleville-Nutley Municipal Election

Mayor Michael Melham of Belleville-Nutley will face an uphill fight from Councilman Steven Rovell for election in this year’s Belleville-Nutley municipal elections, both candidates campaigning on development and real estate as key issues in their campaigns.

Rovell enjoys collecting sports memorabilia, such as ticket souvenirs and photographs. Recently he attended a sports collectibles trade show to keep up on what’s trending.

Early Life and Education

Rovell is a third generation Belleville resident with degrees from Rutgers University and Stevens Institute of Technology. Additionally, he has held leadership positions such as president of Bellwood Civic Association and trustee of The Belleville Foundation; serving on township council budget and finance committee.

He enjoys birding and leads field trips for the Monterey County, Santa Cruz and San Benito Bird Clubs. Additionally he likes native plant gardening, soccer and photography as hobbies.

Rovell was narrowly defeated by incumbent Mayor Michael Melham in May 2020 after an intensely competitive election campaign. Melham’s slate of at-large councilmembers, Naomy de Pena and Thomas Graziano, beat Rovell’s running mates Charles Hood and Tracey Juanita Williams; Rovell sought re-election with an emphasis on providing an equitable development portfolio that included affordable senior housing units.

Professional Career

Project Manager – Responsible for overseeing a portfolio of technology projects including communications and hardware systems. Oversee contracts, bidding, and project execution; experienced in IT software, networking, two way radio UHF/VHF/800MHz cellular terrestrial satellite environments.

Steve Rovell sat in his campaign headquarters with a sore back, an uncertain gaze in his eyes as he considered his chances in this week’s two-man street battle to keep his seat on Belleville town council.

His opponent is Peter Drozdz, an aide to Mayor Ray Kimble who backs Assemblyman/Freeholder Ralph Caputo and three running mates against incumbent Mayor Kimble. Drozdz’s campaign mailers criticizing Drozdz as having raised taxes eight times while increasing public service doubled-down have angered Rovell who sees Drozdz’s newcomer persona as disqualifying him as an option for mayorship.

Achievement and Honors

Steve Rovell is a third generation Belleville resident who has long served in various capacities within his township. He currently sits on the Belleville Board of Education and has been active with numerous community organizations over time. Steve’s hobbies include native plant gardening and soccer; in addition to being an avid birder who has led pelagic trips for various local groups.

Rovell was honored for his contributions in sports betting when he was recognized as one of the top 100 media influencers of 2019. Additionally, he joined The 400 Club – which honors those who have significantly advanced the sports industry – and received this distinction.

Personal Life

An old adage cautions against mixing business with pleasure, yet that’s exactly what Steve Rovell does – both professionally as a journalist and privately as an enthusiast collector.

He is also president of the Bellwood Civic Association and trustee of the Belleville Foundation, actively working to advance local causes by prioritizing hiring of Belleville residents for public safety and works jobs as well as helping secure $2 Million in outside grants to improve facilities such as high school stadiums and recreational facilities.

He’s competing against an alliance led by Assemblyman/Freeholder Ralph Caputo that includes councilman Thomas Salzano and former councilwoman Elvin Pereira for mayorship, with plans to focus on balanced development that supports affordable senior housing alongside residential and commercial growth that aligns with existing neighborhood homes and buildings in terms of height and size.

Net Worth

After his time with ESPN, Rovell joined CNBC as its sports business reporter. His Twitter following has grown considerably due to his coverage of sports betting, projections and other topics of news.

Rovell eventually secured employment at Action Network in 2018 as a reporter on sports business for them.

Forbes estimates Rovell had an estimated net worth of approximately $21.5 billion as of March 2019; this puts him in 35th position behind Nike co-founder Phil Knight and Bass Pro Shops owner John Morris. A third-generation Belleville resident, he has spent 10 years serving on the nonprofit Belleville Foundation board which promotes sustainable development and affordable senior housing; additionally he sits on Suburban Metro Joint Insurance Fund board.

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