MOUNT LAUREL, N.J. (AP) — A longtime state lawmaker from southern New Jersey is now chairman of the Burlington County College Board of Trustees.

Joe Malone received the appointment Tuesday, the same day he was sworn in to his board seat.

Officials cited his long career as an educator and his work in the state assembly, where he served several years as the GOP’s ranking member on the Budget Committee.

Malone, who declined to seek re-election last November after serving nearly 20 years in the legislature, said he was surprised by the board’s decision, but added that he planned to “jump right into the job.” He succeeds Marilyn Williamson, who had been named the board’s chairwoman last month.

Besides his time in the Assembly, Malone also was mayor and deputy mayor of Bordentown from 1973-1997.

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