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Mayor Ras J. Baraka announced today that the City of Newark will swear in Emilia Perez, Esq. into her duties as the newest judge on the city’s Municipal Court today, Wednesday, October 10, at 4:30 p.m., in the Municipal Council Chamber, in City Hall. City Hall is located at 920 Broad Street.

Judge Perez has a 10-year history with Newark’s municipal government. From 2008 to 2015, she served as an assistant corporation counsel, specializing in civil litigation, representing Newark in court in many court cases, at state, appellate, and federal levels, over a broad spectrum of civil matters. From 2008 to 2015, she was an Assistant Municipal Prosecutor, reviewing investigations to and making recommendations on their prosecution. In October 2015, she became Assistant Section Chief of Civil Litigation, making her second-in-command of this office.

“We are privileged to have a lawyer with the ability, experience, and wisdom of Emilia Perez on our municipal bench,” Mayor Baraka said. “She will do honor to our municipal bench and ensure that everyone who comes before her receives equal justice. I congratulate her on this well-deserved appointment.”

“I am extremely thankful, humbled and honored for this appointment. I will serve the great City of Newark, which has exposed me to so many opportunities; with the highest degree of integrity, fairness and distinction,” said Judge Perez.

Judge Perez gained her Bachelor’s Degree in Administration of Justice and Sociology in 2003 from Rutgers University-New Brunswick and her Juris Doctorate from Seton Hall Law School in 2007. She is admitted to practice in New Jersey, the United States District Court for the District of New Jersey Bar, and the United States Court of Appeals for the Third District. She is a member of the Essex County Bar, National Hispanic Bar, and New Jersey State Bar Associations.

Born in the Dominican Republic, Judge Perez immigrated to Perth Amboy at age eight, and is a first-generation college student, growing up in a family of limited resources. Her father could not read or write and her mother had an elementary school education.

A mother of two girls, Judge Perez serves on several community-oriented programs, including as co-chair of the HBA-NJ Disaster Relief Committee.


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meet the mayor

The Honorable Mayor Ras J. Baraka

Ras J. Baraka is the 40th Mayor of the City of Newark.

A native of Newark, whose family has lived in the City for more than 70 years, Mayor Baraka’s progressive approach to governing has won him accolades from grassroots organizations to the White House. With a forward-thinking agenda that reduced crime to its lowest levels in five decades, addressed affordability while maintaining steady growth, lowered unemployment, and returned local control of schools after more than two decades, Baraka defied expectations during his first term in office. 

As a part of his commitment to strengthen Newark’s position in the expanding technology space, Mayor Baraka has partnered with corporate stakeholders and institutions, such as NJIT (New Jersey Institute of Technology) on efforts that will capitalize on the 26 miles of dark fiber which lie beneath the City’s main corridors. Consequently, Newark is the host city for VOICE, a three-day summit hosted by Amazon Alexa, which is at the forefront of natural language processing. Additionally, in 4Q of 2018, the City will also launch LinkNWK (pronounced Link Newark), a new communications network of sidewalk kiosks that will provide residents of and visitors to Newark with free, gigabit Wi-Fi, mobile device charging, phone calls to anywhere in the U.S., access to municipal services, maps and directions, and real-time local information on city streets at no cost to taxpayers or users.

Mayor Baraka’s futurist agenda includes the implementation of a groundbreaking partnership called Hire. Buy. Live. Newark, a program that marks the first time that any US city has sought to transform its economy by combining employment, procurement, and residential strategies. These types of initiatives caught the attention of Amazon, which named Newark as a finalist city in its search to establish its second global headquarters.

He is considered nationally as a thought leader in the space of urban revitalization and his defiance of a hostile Presidential directive targeting the immigrant community with an executive order designating Newark as a sanctuary city solidified his status as one of the country’s most progressive elected officials.

Mayor Baraka was educated in the Newark Public Schools. He received a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science and History from Howard University in Washington, D.C. and a Master’s Degree in Education Supervision from St. Peter’s University in Jersey City. His father, the late Amiri Baraka, was a legendary poet and playwright. His mother, Amina Baraka, is herself a renowned poet. The father of three daughters, Mayor Baraka is a published author and well-regarded in the entertainment industry for his appearance on the Grammy-award winning album, “The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill” in his authentic role as an educator.

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