Serving the people of New Jersey was the honor of a lifetime. One of my favorite parts of working in the Legislature for years was the opportunity to work with, advocate with, and befriend some of the smartest, savviest and most inspirational women in the Garden State.
When I was first sworn in, I was the only woman in the Assembly’s Democratic caucus room. Today, there are over 40 women in the Legislature and our Lt. Governor is a woman. Now, that’s not even half of the seats in chambers but it’s an improvement. We also have more women managing campaigns, consulting and advocating in Trenton than ever before.
Leading efforts to protect women in the workplace, improve maternity care, bolster equal pay and expand our laws against discrimination has been one of the great joys of my life. Being a part of this social, cultural and political sea-change for women continues to fill me with pride and purpose every day.
We all know there is still much work to be done. Last year I launched the Loretta PAC to support local woman candidates around the state and I continue to share my opinions and positions, even with those who don’t want to hear it. There are too many fights worth fighting to truly retire, however, I recognize the need to pass the torch – to give space for the next generations of leaders, advocates and coalition builders. I have thoroughly enjoyed creating and maintaining this list of New Jersey’s powerful women, but next year I am handing the reins over to Assemblywoman Shavonda E. Sumter.
Shavonda is an unwavering advocate for social justice, equality and women’s rights. I could not be more sure that the project is in safe, reliable hands.
Thank you to all the people who have made this possible over the years and thank you to Insider NJ for supporting the creation of this list. I assure you it is worth it, because if there’s one thing we can all agree on, it’s that Jersey Girls really are something special.
Loretta Weinberg, former Senate Majority Leader