With a vacancy in the Ocean County Sheriff’s Office after the passing of William Polhemus, Toms River Police Chief Michel Mastronardy wants to throw his hat into the ring.

Toms River Police Chief Mike Mastronardy (BBC)

Mastronardy received the support of the Ocean County Republican Party Monday during their annual convention. The Toms River Police Chief, who received nationwide exposure during and immediately after Superstorm Sandy, says while overseeing law enforcement for an entire county will be different than just for one township, at it’s core there are a lot of similarities.

“You’re dealing with people within the community, so you commit to the people and residents and in that aspect it’s very similar.”

The Toms River chief is known for presence on the streets, conducting regular patrols. He notes the position as Sheriff will require a different approach that he is ready to implement.

“A lot of aspects will be reviewing what is currently done, working with the Freeholders, and with my fellow chiefs to provide professional public service and safety to the residents of Ocean County.”

This is Mastornardy’s fourth time running for elected office, and admittedly the most challenging.

“I will say I was fortunate enough to run in three unopposed elections, kindergarten class, president of my seventh grade class, and president of the State Police Chiefs.”

Mastronardy is still the Toms River Police Chief, he says the status of his position within the department is still to be decided.

“I myself am waiting to meet with people to discuss the transition, right now it’s premature.”