The Montclair State University Board of Trustees has named New Jersey State Senate Majority Leader Loretta Weinberg as the honorary degree recipient for its January Graduate School Commencement ceremony.
Senator Weinberg will deliver the keynote address and receive an honorary Doctor of Letters degree on Sunday, January 14, 2018, during a ceremony to be held at the New Jersey Performing Arts Center in Newark, New Jersey.
“During the course of her long and distinguished public service, Loretta Weinberg has been an impassioned advocate for the people of New Jersey, always working to advance equal opportunities for all and to protect those most vulnerable in our society,” says Montclair State University President Susan A. Cole. “A firm believer in the lasting and intrinsic value of education, she has also been a strong and effective advocate for Montclair State and its students. We are exceptionally proud to be able to bestow this well-deserved honor on Senator Weinberg.”
“It is truly overwhelming to receive an honorary degree from one of New Jersey’s most respected institutions of education,” says Senator Weinberg. “My profound thanks to the Montclair State University family for bestowing this honor on me.”
Elected to the New Jersey Senate to represent Bergen County in November 2005, Senator Weinberg serves as the Senate Majority Leader, as a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, is vice chair of the Legislative Oversight Committee and sits on the New Jersey-Israel Commission, the New Jersey Historical Commission, and the State Legislative Services Commission. She has been appointed by the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of New Jersey to an ad hoc committee examining domestic violence and the court system.
Prior to joining the senate, she served in the New Jersey General Assembly for 14 years, during which she sponsored many bills that were enacted into law, including legislation that lowered the legal blood-alcohol level for impaired driving to .08 as well as the New Jersey Smoke-Free Air Act. She also sponsored legislation that overhauled the jury selection process and legislation that required health insurance companies to pay for at least 48 hours of hospital care for new mothers and their babies. Senator Weinberg additionally created the Governor’s Advisory Council on Adolescent Pregnancy and shaped a landmark bill that gives $1 from every New Jersey traffic violation to autism research.
Throughout her legislative career, Senator Weinberg has been in the lead on every Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) advancement in New Jersey, and she also has sponsored numerous gun violence prevention measures.
Her leadership and advocacy has been honored by groups such as the New Jersey Press Association, the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), and the National Newspaper Association.
The Graduate School Commencement ceremony will begin at noon on Sunday, January 14, 2018. For more information, visit montclair.edu/commencement/graduate.