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The Newark Experience: Leading the City: The Mayors

Newark Today


Newark Mayors
Chronological list of Newark mayors from William Halsey (1836-1837) to Ras Baraka (July 2014- ).

The Mayor's Office

Mayor Ras Baraka
The official municipal site.
Mayor Luis Quintana
Luis Quintana was mayor from October 2013 to July 2014.
Mayor Cory A. Booker
Archived site. Includes annuals addresses, videos, and initiatives.


Street Fight [Videorecording].
Oley, PA, Bullfrog Films, 2005.
"Follows the 2002 race for Mayor of Newark, N.J. between 32 year-old Cory Booker and four-term incumbent Sharpe James." Written, directed, and produced by Marshall Curry.
Dana Call Number: MEDIA DVD 321
Online Access Rutgers-restricted access

Newark Mayors

"Politicians and Urban Policy Change,"
S.C. Brooks. and R.L. Lineberry. IN Urban Policy Analysis: Directions for Future Research. Edited by Terry Nichols Clark. Beverly Hills, Sage Publications, 1981.
Focuses on police services in Newark and Philadelphia and the correlation between mayoral elections and crime data.
Alexander Call Number: HT108 .U7 v.21 Available?
Black Mayors and School Politics: The Failure of Reform in Detroit, Gary, and Newark.
Wilbur C. Rich. New York, Garland, 1996.
Analyzes the roles played by black mayors and black politicians in relation to school policies and attempted reforms in Detroit, Gary, and Newark. Finds that neither black nor white political power is sufficient to overcome the power of the "public school cartel" (administrators, school board members, professional educators, and teacher union leaders) which controls school policy-making in large city school districts.
Dana Call Number: LC90 .M5R53 1996 [NEWARK plus STACKS] Available?

Kenneth Gibson

"Gibson of Newark,"
C. Robert Zelnick. City: Magazine of Urban Life and Environment 6, January/February 1972, 10-22.
Robeson (Camden) Call Number: Periodical, Shelved by Title
"Newark: Political Brokers,"
Fred Barbaro. Society 9(10), 1972, 42-47; 50-54.
The election of Kenneth Gibson as Newark's first black mayor within the framework of Newark's political history 1960-1972.
Dana Call Number: Periodical, Shelved by Title
"Black Mayorality Campaigns: Running the 'Race',"
Mfanya D. Tryman. Phylon 35(4), December 1974, 346-358.
Looks at the factors that resulted in the election of Carl Stokes in Cleveland, Richard Hatcher in Gary, and Kenneth Gibson in Newark. Rutgers-restricted Access
The Persistent Minority: The Black Political Experience in Newark.
Robert Curvin. Thesis (Ph.D), Princeton University, 1975.
Looks at Kenneth Gibson's first term as Newark mayor (1970-1974); concludes that "the lack of substantial change during Gibson's first term is rooted in economic, political, and social structure that operates to protect the status quo, the wealth of the already affluent, and the position and control of those already in power...More specifically, this study attempts to show how a pluralistic society works, over time, to thwart the goals of an oppressed group, even when it becomes a 'majority' in a given jurisdiction."
Dana Call Number: F144 .N6C95 [NEWARK plus STACKS] Avaiable?
Illusions of Power: Gibson's Impact Upon Employment Conditions in Newark, 1970-1974.
Willa Johnson. Thesis (Ph.D), Rutgers University, 1978.
Attempts "to determine to what degree, if any, the presence of a Black mayor has improved the conditions of the people of Newark during the years 1970-1974." Finds that the election of a Black mayor does not change the basic power relationships within a city and is no panacea to problems of poverty and unemployment
Dana Call Number: F144 .N6J7A 1978a [NEWARK plus STACKS] Available?
Electoral Demands and Political Benefits: Minority as Majority: A Case Study of Two Mayoral Elections in Newark, New Jersey, 1970, 1974.
Kathryn B. Yatrakis. Thesis (Ph.D), Columbia University, 1981.
Dana Call Number: NEWARK JS1242 .Y37 1981a Available?
Newark Will Get There First the Legacy of Mayor Ken Gibson (Part 1) (Part 2)
Thomas Banker, Robert Curvin, Carol Graves and Gustav Heningburg, panalists; moderated by Guy Sterling. Newark History Society program, October 6, 2009.

Sharpe James

Political Prisoner
Sharpe James. Nutany Publishing, 2013.
Memoir. Available?
The Paradox of African-American Mayoral Leadership and the Persistence of Poverty in the African-American Community.
Kirk Edward Harris. Thesis (Ph.D), Cornell University, 1992.
"This study explores Black mayoral governance in the context of historical and political episodes which shape not only this leadership's governing tendencies but its fundamental relationship with the Black community."Utilizes three detailed case studies of three black mayors: Kurt Schmoke of Baltimore; W. Wilson Goode of Philadelphia; and Sharpe James of Newark.
Dana Call Number: E185.615 .H37 1992a [NEWARK plus STACKS] Available?
"Newark Brings Its Municipal Government Online,"
Sharpe James. IN Innovations in E-government: The Thoughts of Governors and Mayors. Edited by Erwin A. Blackstone, Michael L. Bognanno, and Simon Hakim. Lanham, Md., Rowman & Littlefield, 2005.
Alexander Call Number: JK468. A8I56 2005 Available?

The 2002 Mayoral Election

Street Fight [Videorecording].
Oley, PA, Bullfrog Films, 2005.
"Follows the 2002 race for Mayor of Newark, N.J. between 32 year-old Cory Booker and four-term incumbent Sharpe James." Written, directed, and produced by Marshall Curry.
Dana Call Number: MEDIA DVD 321
" The Good and the Lucky, "
The Economist 362 (8267), April 6, 2002, p.28
Report on the upcoming (May 2002) mayoral election in Newark. Rutgers-restricted Access
"Generational Conflict in Urban Politics: the 2002 Newark Mayoral Election,"
Jeffrey Kraus. Forum: A Journal of Applied Research in Contemporary Politics 2(3), 2004, Article 7.
The 2002 mayoral election between incumbent Sharpe James and challenger Cory Booker is part of a new trend in contemporary politics: a contest between an older African-American incumbent and a younger African-American politician. Concludes that the younger--and generally more moderate--politicians have difficulty winning support from older African-American voters. Rutgers-restricted Access
Politics, Paradigms and Perceptions: The Racial, Generational and Urban Development Implications of the 2002 and 2006 Newark Mayoral Elections.
Jonathan L. Wharton. Ph.D. Thesis, Howard University, 2008.
Dana Call Number: JS1242.73 .W43 2008a [NEWARK plus STACKS] Available?

The 2006 Mayoral Election

Newark 2006: The Race for Mayor
New York Times blog.

Cory Booker

25 Accomplishments in 25 Months.
Cory Booker. Newark, N.J., Newark Press Information Office, 2008.
Dana Call Number: F144 .N5N49 2008 [NEWARK plus STACKS] Available?
"Cory Booker,"
Gwen Ifill IN The Breakthrough: Politics and Race in the Age of Obama. New York, Doubleday, 2009, pp. 137-157.
Dana Call Number: E185.615 .I34 2009 [NEWARK plus STACKS] Available?
The New Black Politician: Cory Booker, Newark, and Post-Racial America
Andra Gillespie. New York, New York University Press, 2012. Available?
2011 State of the City Address
March 1, 2011.
A Post-Racial Change in Gonna Come: Newark, Cory Booker, and the Transformation of Urban America.
Jonathan L. Wharton. New York, Palgrave Macmillan, 2013. Available?

Ras Baraka

Baraka 100 Day Plan
Focusing on Public Safety, Community Engagement, Executive Recruiting, and Economic Development.