United Black Agenda (UBA) Urges Governor Murphy to Appoint a Black Woman to Succeed the Late Lt. Governor Sheila Oliver
With the death of Lieutenant Governor Sheila Y. Oliver, Governor Phil Murphy has forty-five
(45) days to appoint her successor. The United Black Agenda urges Governor Phil Murphy to fill
her position with a Black woman.
Lt. Governor Sheila Y. Oliver was the first Black woman to serve as Speaker of the New Jersey
General Assembly in the history of the State of New Jersey and the second to lead a legislative
chamber in the country. She was the first Black female Lt. Governor in New Jersey’s history. As
stated by Leroy Jones, chairman of the State Democratic Party, Lt. Governor Oliver was an
exemplary role model for Black women and girls throughout the state.” She was a trailblazer and
a representative for her community. From a young age, Lt. Governor Oliver was inspired to be a
fighter for the voiceless when her eyes were opened to the injustices and inequities in society.
In honor of Lt. Governor Sheila Y. Oliver’s legacy of blazing the way for Black women and
girls, it is only fitting that her replacement be a Black woman. Therefore, the members of the
United Black Agenda urge the Governor to consider the late Lt. Governor’s platform and passion
in choosing her replacement. Indeed, as plans are being made for final services to honor the Lt.
Governor’s life of public service, the most fitting tribute to her legacy would be to ensure that a
Black woman succeed her and carry on her mission.
The UBA is a coalition that provides a shared space and collective voice to promote the
health and welfare of Black New Jerseyans. The UBA acknowledges and proactively
attacks the root causes of inequality and aggressively pursues legislation, policies, and
programs to mitigate the ravages of white supremacy and affirm the tenets of
democracy, freedom, and liberty. UBA members include Rev. Dr. Charles F. Boyer, Carolyn V. Chang Esq., Vivian Cox-Fraser, Rev. Eric Dobson, Reva Foster, John Harmon,
Jerome C. Harris, Ryan P. Haygood, Taiisa Kelly, Alexander H. McLucas, and Richard T. Smith.