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WPCNJ to Honor Marcia Brown Recipient of the Social Justice Award

Marcia Wilson Brown is vice chancellor for external relations and governmental affairs, a position in which she forges and maintains relationships on behalf of Rutgers University – Newark with public officials, governmental agencies, and civic groups. She has spent more than 15 years in higher education at Rutgers University-Newark, holding positions as vice chancellor for student and community affairs, associate dean for program development in the School of Public Affairs and Administration (SPAA), associate dean and director of academic foundations, and associate dean of the Rutgers School of Law-Newark Minority Student Program.


Brown is an alumna of the School of Law-Newark where she was elected class speaker and was the recipient of three honors: International Academy of Trial Lawyers Award, Judge J. Skelly Wright Award for Civil and Human Rights Activities, and the Rutgers Alumni Senior Award. She clerked for Chief Justice Robert Wilentz, Chief Justice of the New Jersey Supreme Court, and was admitted to practice in New Jersey, Pennsylvania, U.S. Federal District Courts (Eastern Districts, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit), and the U.S. Supreme Court.


Brown is involved with research, teaching, and civic engagement activities at RU-N. She helped to expand the Office of University-Community Partnerships; engaged funders as partners for access and retention programs for students from Newark and from first-generation families; and served as a consultant and adjunct with the Institute on Ethnicity, Culture and the Modern Experience. She also teaches a seminar annually focused on social justice and health disparities, and is affiliated faculty at SPAA. Under the leadership and guidance of former RU-N Chancellor Steve Diner, she helped bring in more than $500,000 in scholarship money for first-generation students from Newark to attend college and live on campus.


Brown has spent more than 30 years in community development advocacy in Newark, working on housing, education, and nonprofit leadership issues, and through the Lucent Foundation, she helped structure more than $10 million in philanthropic dollars toward Newark’s nonprofits engaged in rebuilding neighborhoods and providing learning opportunities for young people. As president and co-founder of the University Heights Neighborhood Development Corporation (UHNDC), she and social activists Junius Williams and Richard Cammiereri helped develop more than 60 units of affordable housing in the Central Ward for low- to moderate-income families.


Brown has been recognized on numerous occasions for her contributions to young people and the quality of life in Newark. She is a mother, grandmother, poet, and the founder of the newly minted Newark Repertory Theater Company committed to engaging and educating audiences with bold, dynamic, and diverse theatrical plays.

WPCNJ to Honor Assemblyman Anthony Verrelli Recipient of the Good Guy Award

Assemblyman Anthony S. Verrelli has been committed to helping other people his whole life. An unapologetic advocate for New Jersey’s working-class families, he believes that everyone deserves a second chance and an opportunity to succeed.


Anthony, born and raised in Trenton and Lawrence by Italian and Scottish immigrants to the United States, graduated from Notre Dame High School before attending the Sam F. Secretario Carpenters Training Center.


Anthony became a member of the United Brotherhood of Carpenters & Joiners of America in 1989 and remained a union member for over 30 years. As a union carpenter, he served as a senior council representative, team leader, and trustee for the Northeast Carpenter Funds and as president of Carpenters Local Union 254. During career in the trades, Anthony fought for fair wages and strong health benefits for his union members.


Anthony began a career of public service in 2001, when he became a member of the Ewing Township Zoning Board of Adjustments, on which he served until 2004. He was a member of the Mercer County Planning Board from 2004 to 2008 and the Mercer County Improvement Authority from 2008 to 2016.


Anthony served on the Mercer County Board of Chosen Freeholders from 2016 to 2018 and has served the working families of the Fifteenth Legislative District in the New Jersey General Assembly since August of 2018. He was re-elected by his constituents to serve his first full term in the Assembly in November of 2019.


Assemblyman Verrelli supported raising the minimum wage to $15 per hour by 2024 so that all New Jerseyans can live well and retire with dignity. He champions legislation that improves and expands access to physical and mental healthcare –including addiction and substance abuse services – and reentry services; reduces recidivism, strengthens protections for veterans, seniors, children, and vulnerable populations; effectuates economic justice; and ensures clean air and water for all.


Assemblyman Verrelli is vice-chair of the Assembly Labor Committee and is a member of the Assembly Health Committee and the Assembly Special Committee on Infrastructure and Natural Resources.


Anthony has been a proud member of the Hopewell Township Knights of Columbus since 2010and sits on the boards of Recovery Advocates of America and CONTACT of Mercer County. Anthony lives in Hopewell Township with his wife, Donna, and his daughter, Alyssa, and many of his relatives reside in Mercer County.

WPCNJ to Honor Michellene Davis, Esq. recipient of the Mary Philbrook Award

Named among the Top 25 Most Influential Minority Leaders in Healthcare in the nation by Modern Healthcare Magazine, Becker's Hospital Review Top 50, Top 65 and in 2020, Top 70 African Americans to Know in Healthcare, Top 10 on the NJBIZ Health Care Power 50, the 2017 Top 100 in Business, the ROI-NJ Top Influencer, the Insider-NJ Politically Most Influential List, ranked by NJBIZ as the State of New Jersey’s top lobbyist in the healthcare industry, and as one of the Top 25 Most Influential Black Women in Business by The Network Journal, Michellene Davis serves as Executive Vice President and Chief Corporate Affairs Officer of RWJBarnabas Health. Ms. Davis leads Social Impact and Community Investment across the healthcare system. She oversees the areas of Policy Development and Government Affairs, Healthy Living and Community and Employee Wellness and Engagement, and Global Health.

She leads the organization’s mission of health through addressing the social determinants of health through a policy led equity framework of racial justice informed social impact and serves to enhance the system’s position with state and federal elected officials and agencies.

Ms. Davis is a noted thought leader on health equity and change agency and is the co-author of, “Changing Missions, Changing Lives: How a Change Agent can Turn the Ship and Create Impact.” RWJBarnabas Health is the largest, most integrated healthcare delivery system in the State of New Jersey, covering a service region which is home to more than two-thirds of the State’s residents. Having joined RWJBarnabas Health (previously Barnabas Health System) in 2009, Ms. Davis became the first woman and the first person of color to ever ascend to the position of Executive Vice President in its 152 year history. She is the creator of the RWJBarnabas Health Women’s Leadership Alliance, the Young Professional Advisory Council and the Corporate Institute for Internship.

Before joining RWJBarnabas Health, Ms. Davis served as Chief Policy Counsel to former New Jersey Governor Jon Corzine, where she was the first African American to serve in this position in state history. She was the first African American and only the second women to serve as Acting New Jersey State Treasurer responsible for a state budget of over $30 billion dollars. She was the youngest person to serve as Executive Director of the New Jersey Lottery in state history and served as a senior policy advisor in the New Jersey Department of Health and Senior Services. Ms. Davis has a proven record of supporting the equitable building of community wealth throughout her career and, while Acting State Treasurer of New Jersey, founded the New Jersey Department of the Treasury’s Office of Supplier Diversity and Division of Minority and Women Owned Businesses.

She is also active in civic engagement in the local and the global community. Internationally, she is a member of the Board of Directors of the International Black Women’s Public Policy Institute. Nationally, she serves on the Boards of The Democracy Collaborative, The Root Cause Coalition and the Building Healthy Places Network Advisory Council.

She is the President Emeritus of the Executive Women of New Jersey, the state’s premier organization for senior level executive women in business, Chair of Academic Affairs for the Joint Board of Rutgers-Rowan Universities; Treasurer of the New Jersey Performing Arts Center WoWomen’s Association; and is on the boards of the Rutgers Institute for Women’s Leadership; New Jersey Bipartisan Coalition for Women’s Appointments; The Caucus Educational Trust and the New Jersey Legislative Black Caucus Foundation.

She began her legal career as a trial litigator, is an Honors graduate of Seton Hall University and holds a Juris Doctorate from Seton Hall School of Law and Executive Education Certificates in Corporate Social Responsibility and Social Impact Strategy from the Harvard Business School and from the Wharton School of Business respectively.


WPCNJ Endorsed Asw. Valerie Vainieri Huttle for NJ State Senate

The Women’s Political Caucus of NJ (WPCNJ) Endorses Assemblywoman Valerie Vainieri Huttle for District 37 Senate Seat
With the retirement of the incomparable Senate Majority Leader Loretta Weinberg, the Legislature will lose one of its most dedicated advocates for women’s issues. We must ensure that her seat is filled by a public servant as equally committed to not only supporting women and women’s initiatives, but one with a record of spearheading their advancement and passage.  We believe Assemblywoman Valerie Vainieri Huttle is that candidate. 
For over a decade, Valerie Vainieri Huttle has supported and advocated for issues central to WPCNJ’s mission including reproductive health and choice initiatives, pay equity, paid sick leave, and assistance for survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault. She did so not only in words but in deeds, sponsoring with Senator Weinberg so many of the laws that make New Jersey better for women. 
Assemblywoman Vainieri Huttle has made Trenton more welcoming for women who want to serve in government. She has long maintained a majority female staff and has hosted a leadership program for high school women from her district. She is also a champion for seniors and individuals with disabilities and mental health conditions, and their paid and unpaid caregivers, who are disproportionately women. 
The women of New Jersey need greater representation in the State Senate. WPCNJ proudly endorses Assemblywoman Valerie Vainieri Huttle for the District 37 Senate seat. 

WPCNJ to Honor Kivvit Recipient of the Corporate Award

Kivvit is a nationally recognized, top 15 public affairs and strategic communications firm. We are proud of our strong commitment to creating opportunities for women and fostering the advancement of women’s careers. Kivvit celebrates and encourages representation and diversity across our five offices, while also ensuring we are a family-friendly workplace.


In our nine years serving the State of New Jersey, we have been fortunate to participate in and manage campaigns that help keep our neighbors healthy and safe, grow our economy, and create jobs that benefit New Jersey’s working families.


For more information on Kivvit - please visit www.kivvit.com

WPCNJ Expresses Gratitude and Congratulations to Senator Loretta Weinberg on her Retirement

For the women who choose to serve, work and volunteer in the volatile world that is New Jersey politics - a field dominated and controlled mostly by men – Senator Loretta Weinberg has been our fiercest advocate, our source of inspiration, our conscience, and our consummate role model.
The Senator’s ability to amplify women’s voices in the political process and to elevate women to serve in meaningful leadership roles has never wavered. Indeed, the footing we rely upon in advancing women’s issues today is a direct result of her longtime efforts to stand up for the most marginalized in our society.  When leaders failed to meet this standard, or if they threatened to take us backwards, she has never hesitated to hold them accountable.
Her strong, capable leadership has guided so many women in New Jersey government and politics. She helped us find our voice, pursue our goals and achieve real progress in so many important areas. In a time when family obligations are still disproportionately shouldered by women, she has served as an example of how to balance private lives with public service.
Most importantly, she has taught us that the progress women have achieved is not accidental. It has been hard-fought and earned inch by inch. Today, we recommit ourselves to build upon those achievements and follow her example.
The Women’s Political Caucus of New Jersey sincerely thanks Senator Weinberg for the vital work she has performed throughout her distinguished career, and for being a source of inspiration and support for current and future women leaders.
Your physical presence will be profoundly missed, but we promise you that your legacy will carry on. We wish you all the best in your retirement and very much hope you will, at least occasionally, continue to hold our feet to the fire.

WPCNJ To Honor Michael Egenton, Good Guy Award Recipient

Michael Egenton serves as Executive Vice President, Government Relations for the New Jersey State Chamber of Commerce, representing the business community on legislative and regulatory matters to the Governor, State Legislature, various State Agencies and the Press. 


Michael is the State Chamber’s Chief lobbyist on environmental, energy, labor, state budget, transportation and local government issues.  He currently serves as chair on the advisory board for the Senator Walter Rand Institute for Public Affairs at Rutgers University - Camden. This 26-member body is committed to advancing southern New Jersey through the research conducted at the policy center.


He is also the longest active serving member on the New Jersey Clean Air Council, an advisory group appointed by the Governor that makes recommendations to the state of New Jersey on matters and programs pertaining to air pollution control.


Prior to coming to the State Chamber, he worked at the New Jersey Institute of Technology (NJIT), analyzing environmental statutes, rules and regulations that impact New Jersey businesses.


Michael also was the Project Director and Principal Author of Modern Forms of Municipal Government, a report published by the New Jersey State Commission on County and Municipal Government.


Michael Egenton is New Jersey-born and educated. A native of Plainfield, Union County, he is a graduate of Seton Hall University and has a Master's Degree in Public Administration from Kean University.
Michael and his family currently reside in Voorhees Township, Camden County.

WPCNJ Proudly Endorses Two Candidates in Legislative District 25

Trenton, NJ – The Women’s Political Caucus of New Jersey (WPCNJ) proudly endorses Rupande Mehta for State Senate and Darcy Draeger for State Assembly in the 25th Legislative District. Mehta and Draeger support WPCNJ’s mission to uphold and protect reproductive freedom and achieve equal rights for all women.
WPCNJ is honored to support these talented women who are ready, willing and able to fight to improve the lives of all New Jersey citizens. Now, more than ever, it is critical that we come together and encourage New Jersey residents to vote and to protect the fundamental rights and freedoms we care so deeply about. WPCNJ feels very fortunate that the citizens of LD25 have the opportunity to vote for two well-qualified and dedicated women.
For more information on these candidates please visit Rupande Mehta and Darcy Draeger.
WPCNJ, founded in 1972, is a chapter of the National Women's Political Caucus. It is a multi-partisan organization dedicated to increasing the number of women in elected and appointed positions in government, protecting reproductive freedom and promoting equal rights for women.

WPCNJ Mourns the Loss of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg


The Women’s Political Caucus of New Jersey (WPCNJ) mourns the loss of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. She was the second woman to hold a seat on the US Supreme Court and served almost 30 years, becoming the most prominent member of our nation’s highest court.


Justice Ginsburg devoted her life to defending constitutional democracy and fighting tirelessly for gender equality. Her historic tenure profoundly improved the lives of American women.


She championed women’s rights against discrimination, push to secure voting rights and supported the right to access health care – including birth control.To say she’ll be missed is an understatement. She was a true trailblazer for all women.


As a women’s organization committed to, among other goals, protecting reproductive freedom and creating a women's political power base to achieve equality for ALL women, we rededicate our efforts to elect more pro-choice women to office and ensure Justice Ginsburg’s legacy is not only honored, but endured.


Vote by Mail - Ballot Information

Vote By Mail - Ballot Information
1. There are 3 envelopes
·(1) The large outer envelope · (2) The inner envelope which is the return mailing envelope
· (3) The certification envelope which is the envelope that the ballot is placed in
2. Prior to opening the large outer envelope, check to make sure that it is your name on the label, the correct address, the correct municipality and the correct Congressional District.
3. If there are any errors, do not open the large envelope and contact your County Clerk’s Office.
4. If everything is correct, you should open the large outer envelope. At the end of the voting process, you can throw out the large outer envelope. The smaller inner envelope - is the envelope that is the return mailing envelope. You must keep that envelope as you will put the completed ballot in it.
5. The inner envelope will have the certification envelope and the ACTUAL VOTE BY MAIL BALLOT.
6. You should read the complete ballot before voting. Please check the top right of the ballot to ensure that you received the ballot for the correct municipality and the correct voting district
(which will be found on the label on the large outer envelope).
7. PLEASE NOTE - YOU CANNOT VOTE FOR MORE THAN THE ALLOTTED AMOUNT OF CANDIDATES PER OFFICE. For example, if the voter votes for 3 individuals when the ballot says vote for 2, the vote for that office is considered an overvote, and the vote for that office WILL NOT COUNT.
8. If the candidate of your choice is pre-printed on the ballot, there is no need to handwrite the candidate’s name in the “Personal Choice” section of the ballot. Doing so may cause the election scanners to read two names and cause an overvote which means the vote will not count.
9. Please look at BOTH sides of the ballot, as some ballots will have candidates on both sides.
10. Once you are satisfied with your vote, fold the ballot and place it into the CERTIFICATION ENVELOPE. The certification envelope has a large flap on it that requires
your complete address and signature.
11. You must complete the residency portion of the certification envelope with your registered address. PLEASE NOTE - IF YOU COMPLETE THE CERTIFICATION WITH THE ADDRESS THE BALLOT WAS MAILED TO AND NOT YOUR REGISTERED ADDRESS, YOUR VOTE MAY NOT COUNT.
12. YOU MUST SIGN the certification envelope where the big RED X is on the certification envelope.
If the voter does not sign the certification envelope by the RED X the vote will not count.
13. You must sign the certification envelope with the signature you most often use. The signature must match or at least resemble the signature on your registration or mail in ballot application.
14. If you need assistance in completing the ballot and/or the certification envelope, the assistor must complete the assistor section of the Certification envelope. EVEN IF THE ASSISTOR COMPLETES THE CERTIFICATION ENVELOPE, YOU (THE VOTER) AND NOT THE ASSISTOR MUST SIGN BY THE RED X. THE ASSISTOR CANNOT SIGN FOR THE VOTER.
15. The ballot goes into the Inner Envelope and sealed. That Inner Envelope then goes inside the Outer Return Envelope, which has the prepaid postage and sealed.
16. The certification envelope is placed into the Inner envelope - which is the envelope with the
address pre-printed on it.
17. Seal the return mail envelope and mail it with the postman, drop it into a mailbox or
bring it to the post office.
18. The return mail envelope may also be dropped off at your counties ballot box.
There are drop boxes around each County where you can drop the return mail envelope. 
Ballot box locations can be found on each County Clerk's website. 
All 21 County Board of Election offices urge voters to vote ASAP to help them maintain the pace of the process.
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