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  • Writer's pictureTiasia Newman

Remembering Sheila Oliver

Aug 5, 2023

Lieutenant Governor Sheila Oliver Facebook Sourced Picture


Lieutenant Governor Sheila Oliver passed away on August 1 after suffering a medical emergency on July 31. The state of New Jersey has lost two powerful black women this year with the death of Judge Lisa Thorton this past April and now Oliver. These women were great examples for young black women watching them persevere throughout their careers.


As a Public Servant, Sheila Oliver left an indelible mark on New Jersey during her tenure as the lieutenant governor. Her unwavering commitment to the well-being of the citizens of New Jersey, accompanied by her tireless efforts to enact positive change, will be remembered for generations to come. Throughout her career, Sheila Oliver deeply understood her constituents' complex issues. From championing educational reforms to advocating for affordable housing and social justice initiatives, her leadership was marked by a sincere desire to improve the lives of all New Jersey residents.


Lieutenant Governor Sheila Oliver addressed an audience with Governor Phil Murphy by her side.

(Facebook Sourced Picture)


One of Oliver's notable accomplishments was her work to enhance access to quality education. She recognized that education is a cornerstone of progress and diligently worked to ensure every child in New Jersey could receive a world-class education. Her initiatives to improve schools, support teachers, and expand educational opportunities have left a lasting legacy. In addition to her dedication to education, Sheila Oliver was a vocal advocate for affordable housing and equitable urban development. She understood the importance of creating vibrant communities where all residents could thrive, regardless of their background or socioeconomic status.


Her efforts to promote affordable housing options and revitalize neighborhoods have contributed to a more inclusive and diverse New Jersey. Sheila Oliver's commitment to social justice was unwavering. She tackled criminal justice reform, healthcare access, and equal rights with determination and compassion. Her advocacy for marginalized communities and her willingness to address systemic inequalities earned her the respect and admiration of many.


Reflecting on Sheila Oliver's contributions, we are reminded of the power of dedicated public service. Her legacy serves as an inspiration for future leaders and a reminder that positive change is possible through hard work, empathy, and a steadfast commitment to the betterment of society. While we mourn the loss of Sheila Oliver, we also celebrate her life and the impact she made. Her efforts will continue to shape the trajectory of New Jersey and inspire others to follow in her footsteps. As we honor her memory, let us recommit ourselves to the values she held dear and strive to create a more just, equitable, and compassionate society for all. Rest in peace, Sheila Oliver. Your contributions will forever be etched in the heart of New Jersey. Remember, darling, the show must go on and in good fashion.




Should you follow in Lieutenant Governor Sheila Oliver's footprints in the Jersey sands, here's a list of her most notable causes.


1. First African American Woman to Serve as Lieutenant Governor of New Jersey: Sheila Oliver made history in 2018 by becoming the first African American woman to hold the position of Lieutenant Governor in New Jersey.


2. Advocate for Criminal Justice Reform: Oliver has been a vocal advocate for reform, pushing for changes to reduce mass incarceration and promote fairness in the criminal justice system.


3. Leadership in Education: As a former Speaker of the New Jersey General Assembly, Oliver championed education initiatives, working to improve educational opportunities and outcomes for students.


4. Affordable Housing Advocacy: She has strongly supported affordable housing initiatives to address housing challenges and promote accessible housing options for all.


5. Women's Empowerment: Oliver has promoted women's empowerment and gender equality, advocating for policies that support women's rights and opportunities.


6. Community and Economic Development: She has been involved in various community and economic development efforts, revitalizing neighborhoods and supporting local businesses.


7. Environmental Initiatives: Oliver has shown commitment to environmental conservation and sustainability, advocating for policies to address climate change and promote clean energy.


8. Legislative Achievements: During her time in the New Jersey General Assembly, Oliver was crucial in crafting and passing significant legislation on various issues, including healthcare, social services, and civil rights.


9. Engagement with Youth: She has actively engaged with young people, promoting youth leadership and advocating for policies that benefit the next generation.


10. Dedication to Public Service: Throughout her career, Sheila Oliver has demonstrated a solid commitment to public service, working to improve the lives of the people she serves.


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