ON MARCH 16, more than 20 members of the Newark Advisory Council of the Community Relations Committee of MetroWest and Central NJ met with Adam Zipkin to welcome him to his new position as deputy mayor of Newark.
Zipkin, who also serves as director of the department of economic and housing development, spoke about the efforts to revitalize the city downtown with new businesses, corporations, residential buildings, and restaurants.
“In Newark we are experiencing a level of economic development not seen before,” Zipkin said.
This vision of a vibrant city that he, Mayor Cory Booker, and other Newark leaders have been pursuing since 2006, Zipkin said, is being fulfilled. “The first new supermarket in 20 years is opening, the first new hotels in 40 years will be opening, and fresh produce is being grown and sold in smaller community corner stores.
“This revitalization is bringing jobs to Newark and parks and housing for special populations,” Zipkin said. “Jon Bon Jovi’s Help USA and Brad Pitt’s Make It Right organizations are in Newark partnering with us on special needs and specialized housing projects.”
Zipkin expressed his pride that British Prime Minister David Cameron recently came to Newark to discuss with leaders the city’s economic development, school system, and state governance. “They view Newark’s revitalization as successful and wanted to learn more,” Zipkin said.
Council member Andy Cohen of Rock Properties in Newark said, “You can measure the success of the development by the increasing numbers of young professionals and artists who are moving to Newark — and staying in Newark for the night life. This is a testament to the positive change going on in this city.”
Zipkin, a member of Ahavas Sholom, the city’s oldest continually operating synagogue, told his visitors that the greatest lesson he derives from studying Torah and other texts is the importance of “giving to the poor.”
According to Roger Jacobs, past CRC chair and council founder, “This was a great opportunity for Jewish leaders to connect with Adam Zipkin. He seems to live the notion of tikun olam every day in his role as deputy mayor and reminds many of us of our Newark roots.”
“We were energized by our meeting with Adam Zipkin, and we hope to strengthen our relationship with the City of Newark and see how we can be a resource for the betterment of the city and its citizens,” said CRC director Melanie Roth Gorelick.
The meeting was organized by the Newark Advisory Council of the Community Relations Committee (CRC) of MetroWest and Central NJ. The CRC has a long standing relationship with the government of Newark and engages in joint programming from funding an elementary playground to Holocaust Remembrance programs.