Karin Elkis has been committed to serving the people of New Jersey for four decades. During that time, she has helped thousands of New Jersey residents navigate the complexities of State and Federal Government to solve their most pressing issues. She has been a Senior Advisor to three United States Senators and numerous State legislators, advised many of our State's Governors, served as government relations advisor to many of our State's leading corporate and non-profit entities, and served in leadership roles for numerous charitable and community service-oriented organizations.
During the early years of her career in government, Elkis served as Legislative Aide to New Jersey Assemblyman Martin Herman, where she managed the Third District office staff and advised the Assemblyman on legislative and policy matters.
Karin began her federal service in the United States Senate in 1983 and continued on a career path that led her to become Director of the Southern New Jersey Offices and State Director for three United States Senators - Frank Lautenberg, Jon Corzine and Robert Menendez. In this capacity, Karin served as a senior policy advisor on New Jersey matters, managed the broad range of constituent services throughout the State, and traveled regularly alongside the Senators managing their relationships with elected officials and corporate leaders.
Later in her career, Karin would return to State Government as Chief of Staff of the New Jersey Senate Majority Office. Today, she serves as Senior Vice President of Optimus Partners, a consulting and lobbying firm, based in Trenton, New Jersey.
In addition to her official governmental positions throughout her career, Karin has remained active in elective politics - having been involved with countless campaigns at all levels of government in New Jersey.
Karin continues to serve many charitable organizations, but is best-known for her dedication to New Jersey's Jewish community. She is a leading member or chair of numerous boards and commissions.
Her recent recognitions include the Trailblazer Award from the New Jersey Leaders Council and the Women Who Get It Done Award by Pam's List. She is a Founding Board Member of Maria's Women United, a southern New Jersey women's Political Action Committee (PAC) in honor of the late Maria Barnaby Greenwald. In addition, she has been the recipient of the Evangelina Menendez Women's Trailblazer Award and the John Adler Advocacy Mission Award. Throughout the years, she has been named to various lists of New Jersey's leading female political leaders, including Senate Majority Leader Loretta Weinberg's annual Women Power List.
Many young people - especially young women in their first jobs - who have interned and worked under Karin have gone on to build successful careers of their own. She takes great pride in mentoring these young women and men and continues to provide guidance and support as they pursue their aspirations of becoming active leaders in their communities and the State.
She lives in Haddonfield with her husband, Steven Weinstein, Executive Vice President for Policy & External Relations at Rowan University. Elkis and Weinstein have four children: Jordan (and wife Janet), Noah, Lara and Asher. They are also the proud grandparents of Jackson, Ty, and Lila.
Elkis earned her M.S.W. from Tulane University and her B.A. from the Newcomb College for Women.