Upper Darby Sentinel News Person of the Year 2016


Pennsylvania State Representative James Santora

Each year, the UDSN awards an individual our Person of the Year award. Last year, we gave our Person of the Year to Mayor Tom Micozzie of Upper Darby who has worked tirelessly for the community. He continues his work for the citizens of Upper Darby with his efforts to have continued growth in the township, to continue a quality of life that will bring and keep residents and keep taxes from increasing.


This year, there were some great people we could have named as our person of the year.  Philadelphia Police Officer Jesse Hartnett, 33 who after being shot at 11 times while sitting in his squad car at a red light. Even after being shot, Harnett fired at this assailant hitting him. There is also the Folcroft Police Officer Chris Dorman, was shot in the neck, face and shoulder around 9:45 a.m. in the rear of an apartment building on Elmwood Avenue on June 24th, 2016. After being hit 7 times Dorman is returned to work within months.  There is also the Upper Darby Police Force for their work in reducing crime and drug related crimes in the township.  All of these people could have been our Person of the Year.


Our Person of the Year for 2016 is actually two lawmakers Pennsylvania State Representative James Santora of the 163rd District. This year alone, Santora, arranged for grants to both Upper Darby and Havertown for projects to enhance those communities. He helped to fund a study to make the roads safer in Upper Darby with the passage of $1.5 Million Safety Project for the roads State Road and Lansdowne Ave.


Santora is also helped to pass legislation that legalized Lyft and Uber ride sharing companies. Santora (R-Delaware) and Nick Miccarelli (R-Delaware) amended the bill so that those who have disabilities would be able to share in the program. “In addition to legalizing ride-sharing services in the Commonwealth, this law will provide the necessary vans for people with disabilities. They have not been forgotten, and that is extremely important,” Santora said.


On a personal note, Santora is always there for constituents even if they no longer live right in the neighborhood anymore. Last year, as one father was fighting for his life with kidney cancer, Jamie Santora, the dad, the neighbor and just a great guy, waded into the waters of insurance companies and pharmaceuticals companies to help this family just have more time, time that meant the world to this family. With his help, the help of local news outlets like the Upper Darby Sentinel News, that family did get the medication that gave the children of this man exactly what they needed, time.


For the reasons above and so many more, State Representative James Santora is our pick for our Person of the Year 2016.