December 10, 2021


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Newark, NJ-December 10, 2021-Mayor Ras J. Baraka was awarded the New Jersey Citizen Action’s Innovative Leader Award on Wednesday for what the organization described as “being a true champion of social, racial, and economic justice for all,” and for his “steadfast leadership of the City of Newark during the Coronavirus pandemic.”

“I accept this award humbly, on behalf of the entire city and population of Newark. Their unity, dedication, compassion, and love of our community have made them the true heroes and recipients of this award. New Jersey Citizen Action has recognized our successful work during one of the most challenging times in Newark’s history, and we know that our city will only get stronger, as we work together to create a brighter present and future for all of our residents,” Mayor Baraka said.

“During his tenure, Mayor Baraka has been a force not only for opportunity and growth, but growth that prioritizes all Newark residents and advances economic and racial equity. Along with his dedicated leadership guiding the city through the pandemic, no families or workers are left behind,” said Phyllis Salowe-Kaye, NJ Citizen Action Executive Director. “Thank you, Mayor, for all your work and your commitment to the needs of all the people of Newark.”

The Mayor’s award text read: “For his commitment to social and economic justice for all, including racial equity and inclusion, criminal justice reform, and advancing opportunities for all Newark families, workers, and seniors, with special recognition of his steadfast leadership in promoting public health, food and housing security across the City during the Coronavirus pandemic.”

New Jersey Citizen Action recognized the Mayor and six other honorees.

Distinguished Honorees were: PNC Bank Senior Vice President & Northwest Market Manager William Best; Center on Budget & Police Priorities Brandon McKoy; social advocate Hetty “Equality” Rosenstein; and Department of Community Affairs’ Division of Housing & Community Services Director Janel Winter. Ironbound Community Corporation Deputy Director of Organizing & Advocacy Maria Lopez-Nunez received the Evanoff-Shuchter Award, and the Lifetime Achievement Award went to State Senate Majority Leader Loretta Weinberg.

About New Jersey Citizen Action:

New Jersey Citizen Action is a statewide coalition and grassroots organization that fights for social, racial, and economic justice for all.

A nonprofit 501(c)(4) organization founded in 1982, NJCA combines political advocacy, electoral campaigns, public outreach, and community empowerment programs to make a real difference in the lives of everyday New Jerseyans. With this comprehensive approach, the organization addresses systemic and institutional issues as well as the pressing needs and interests of low- and moderate-income individuals across the state.


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