Perth Amboy operates the oldest city hall in continuous use in the U.S., and in front of it stands New Jersey’s second-oldest elm tree.
Frank Hoffman leads the 58 public employees who maintain that history for the city’s 50,000 residents — while keeping up 81 roadway miles, 16,000 sanitation truck stops, and 23 parks.
He once only dreamed about the job he holds. While experienced as a mechanic, Hoffman lacked credentials to join management. But he found them at the Center for Government Services, part of Rutgers Division of Continuing Studies, where in 2009 he completed the Certified Public Works Manager program.
“I wanted to make myself a better candidate for [public works management] jobs,” recalled Hoffman, who served in the Perth Amboy vehicle bays for 26 years. A Perth Amboy native, he noted, “I paid for everything myself. And I used my own time, and I had to take time off for some of the daytime courses.”