As Women’s History Month comes to an end, it occurred to me that the City of Paterson has something to be very proud of—the fact that the City is led on almost all levels by a woman. I’m sure that this is unprecedented in our City’s long history, and it may be unique among other cities as well, both locally and nationally.
Our Mayor is Jane Williams-Warren. Our Superintendent of Schools is Eileen Shafer. The City Council President is Ruby Cotton. Our Board of Education President is Oshin Castillo. Our Deputy Superintendent of Schools is Susana Peron. Our City Business Administrator (and State Senator) is Nellie Pou. And even on the County level, our Freeholder Director is Sandi Lazzara and our Surrogate is Bernice Toledo!
Without doubt, Paterson is on the cutting edge in terms of women in leadership roles. I think that is something to celebrate, and it should stand as a statement of civic pride. Decades ago, it would have been hard for young girls to imagine that they could grow up to lead our city through so many positions of consequence—but in 2018 it’s no longer a dream and it’s become a reality.
Let Paterson be an example for our entire state and nation!
President of the New Jersey Community Development Corporation (NJCDC)