A group of Black leaders, including New Jersey NAACP New Jersey State Conference president Richard T. Smith, have endorsed Gov. Phil Murphy’s nomination of Fabiana Pierre-Louis as an Associate Justice of the New Jersey Supreme Court.
If confirmed by the State Senate, Pierre-Louis would become the first black woman on New Jersey’s top court, and the first black member since 2010.
“This nomination couldn’t come at a more pressing and important moment. A moment when we are fighting for the soul of this country. When the cracks of structural racism are erupting in earthquakes across America, and across New Jersey. When racial disparities in wealth, education, health outcomes and democracy assault our very notions of justice. And yes, when the undeniable truth that Black lives matter is being tested by the repeated police killings of Black people,” said New Jersey Institute for Social Justice president Ryan P. Haygood in an email.
In addition to Smith, supporters of Pierre-Louis’ nomination include: Elise Boddie, founder of The Inclusion Project at Rutgers Law School; Rev. Dr. Charles F. Boyer, the executive director of the Salvation and Social Justice; Carolyn Chang, past president and current Social Justice Committee chair of the Association of Black Women Lawyers of New Jersey; Rev. Eric Dobson, the vice president of Fair Share Housing Center & Co-Convener of the Black Multifaith Alliance; NJ Black Issues Convention chair Reva Foster; and New Jersey Institute for Social Justice vice chair Jerry Harris.
“As our courts will be a key place for justice to emerge from the current turmoil, it is essential that New Jersey’s people of color are represented there,” Haygood said. “We look forward to Ms. Pierre-Louis’s confirmation and participation on a court that at critical moments has stood for justice, equality and fairness.”