Bergen County native Paul T. Fader, the former two-term Mayor of Englewood, former chief counsel to Governors James McGreevey and Richard Codey, and co-founder of the firm Florio Perrucci Steinhardt and Fader, has died.
Married with four children, regarded as a gentleman and consummate professional, Mr. Fader was one of the most politically connected people in the state, and partner in a Trenton-based lobbying firm, K Street Public Affairs.
He was 58.
His death sent a shock wave through the political establishment, particularly since Mr. Fader did not leave the law firm by his own volition when Florio Perrucci restructured late last month.
“I was shocked and saddened to learn of Paul’s passing this evening.,” said Senator Codey. “Paul was more than just a trusted advisor to me over the years — he was a friend. He spent countless hours in service to our state as both a mayor and as the governor’s chief counsel; he was a true professional in every sense of the word. My heart goes out to his wife and children at this difficult time.”
“Paul Fader was a brilliant attorney, spectacular friend and best joke teller ever,” said attorney Gail Gordon.
Mr. Fader had a long and distinguished career in public service.
As Mayor of Englewood, he successfully championed a revitalization of the Bergen County community’s commercial district. Insiders regarded Mr. Fader as one of the state’s leading legal experts in government, regulatory & lobbying practice, construction, and real estate and land use. Ranked as one of the “Top Ten Lawyer Lobbyists” in the State of New Jersey, Mr. Fader was one of the “100 Most Influential People in the State of New Jersey” by New Jersey Monthly Magazine.
A member of Governor-Elect James E. McGreevey’s transition team, Mr. Fader also served on United States Senators Jon Corzine and Robert G. Torricelli’s Federal Judicial Nominating Committee for the Federal District Court for the State of New Jersey. He was a delegate for President Bill Clinton to the 1996 Democratic National Convention, and served as a delegate for President Barack Obama to the 2012 Democratic National Convention.
Founded in 1996 by former Governor James J. Florio and Michael J. Perrucci, powerhouse law firm Florio Perrucci Steinhardt & Fader, LLC announced a restructuring on Nov. 29th without Mr. Fader. The firm’s new name, Florio, Perrucci, Steinhardt and Cappelli reflected the last name of partner, Lou Cappelli, Jr., Camden County Freeholder Director, who joined the firm in 2007.
Mr. Fader’s cause of death was not immediately clear on Monday night. Two sources say he suffered a massive heart attack.