TRENTON – Gov. Phil Murphy and Lt. Gov. Sheila Oliver on Monday announced that State Sen. Chris A. Brown, Esq. (R-2) will join the Department of Community Affairs’ Division of Local Government Services as the senior advisor for Atlantic City Affairs, a newly created role in the department. Brown will speahead state initiatives in Atlantic City, including efforts to improve public safety, diversify the economy and create jobs, and improve social services.
“Chris is deeply committed to improving the lives of those who call Atlantic City home, and he will be a tremendous asset for the Administration as we further strengthen the Atlantic City economy and improve quality of life,” Murphy said in a release. “I look forward to working together to address issues like economic growth and public safety. With Chris in this new role, and with Sheila at the helm of DCA, the future of Atlantic City has never looked brighter.”
“I couldn’t think of a more qualified person to join DCA to assist with furthering the State’s efforts in Atlantic City,” Oliver said. “Chris has been a strong partner in our ongoing work in South Jersey. I look forward to working together to continue to stabilize the City’s finances, strengthen and diversify the economy, and tackle longstanding challenges such as poverty, unemployment, public safety, and public health.”
Brown thanked Murphy and Oliver for giving him the opportunity to serve Atlantic County families.
“Gov. Murphy and I share the same belief that if you put aside ego and party labels, we can accomplish great things to help working families. I know from working with Lt. Gov. Oliver since 2012, when we served together in the Assembly, and she is fully committed to seeing Atlantic City succeed, which is why I am eager to get started,” Brown said. “We can make the lives of the families of Atlantic City better by taking real action working with the Casino Redevelopment Authority, the police, code enforcement, and community groups to show families and visitors the city is safe and clean, and holding property owners accountable for properly maintaining their buildings and lots. By diversifying the local economy and by encouraging new, non-tourism related industries to locate in the city, like clean energy, we can create new jobs and attract business to our city.”
Brown will step down from his three-year term as District 2 senator. His first day as senior advisor will be July 20. Brown’s salary will be $150,000.
Brown, a Republican,
served three terms in the General Assembly. He served on the Assembly Tourism, Gaming and the Arts Committee and the Assembly Regulatory Oversight and Reform and Federal Relations Committee.
Brown established himself as a staunch advocate for the families, retirees and small businesses of Atlantic County, particularly in leading the fight against North Jersey casinos. He has sponsored laws to enhance the tourism industry, assist veterans transitioning to the civilian workforce, and ensure women receive access to preventative health care.
He served on the Wagering, Tourism & Historic Preservation Committee and the Senate Higher Education Committee and sponsored laws promoting the development of the aviation industry, assisting families recovering from addiction, and making a college education affordable.
Before his election to Assembly, Brown acted as a personal injury civil trial attorney in his own law firm, which he sold in June. He also served as a municipal court judge, solicitor, and assistant solicitor for various municipalities and a school board.
A Persian War veteran, Brown served during Operation Desert Shield and Desert Storm attached to the 82nd Airborne Division, where he was awarded the Bronze Star and Combat Infantryman Badge for his service spearheading the ground offensive into Iraq. In 2008, he was reactivated for Operation Iraqi Freedom.
Brown has also been involved in service to his local community. He is the founder and President of the Chief Arthur R. Brown, Jr. Memorial Scholarship Foundation, which has awarded $275,000 in scholarships to local students since 1992. He is a lifelong member of the Atlantic City Chapter of the NAACP where he served as chairman of the Legal Redress Committee. Additionally, he is a member of American Legion, AMVETS, Jewish War Veterans of America, Marine Corps Law Enforcement Foundation and the Veterans of Foreign Wars.
He is the recipient of the Kiwanis Club Key Award, NAACP Dedication to Community Award, Boys and Girls Club Community Appreciation Award, Art Dorrington Hockey Foundation Award for Volunteerism, the Omega Psi Phi Fraternity Volunteer of the Year, AMVETS’s Assemblyman of the Year, Distinguished Arts Advocate Award from the ArtPride New Jersey Foundation, Thom Schiavo Humanitarian Award from Beth El Synagogue in Margate, and Clare Sabatini Community Award from the New Jersey Shore Arts Association.
After earning a bachelor of arts degree from Rutgers University, Brown obtained his juris doctorate degree from Widener University School of Law.
Brown resides in Ventnor with his wife Christine, and has three children, Matthew, Daniel and Mallory.