Brigid Harrison, MA, PhD
Professor, Political Science and Law
Montclair State University
Brigid Callahan Harrison is Professor of Political Science and Law at Montclair State University, where she has taught since 1994. She is the author of American Democracy Now (McGraw-Hill Publishers, now in its fourth edition), one of the leading introductory political science textbooks in the United States. She is also the author of A More Perfect Union (McGraw-Hill Publishers, 2010), Power and Society (Cengage, now in its 13th edition) and Women in American Politics (Wadsworth, 2003), as well as various peer-refereed journal articles.
Named to PolitickerNJ's Power List 2015 (at #20), Harrison is a frequent commentator in print and electronic media on U.S. politics, Harrison provides regular political analysis to ABC, NBC, and CBS, FOX News, and their local affiliates, to CBS News radio, and to various NPR radio programs. She also is a regular commentator on NJTV. She is a columnist for The New York Observer, PolitickerNJ, and The Bergen Record, and her editorials have appeared in The New York Times, USA Today, The Star-Ledger, and The Press of Atlantic City.
Harrison has served as a moderator or panelist for numerous political debates, including the 2013 New Jersey Gubernatorial debate, and the New Jersey 2012 U.S. Senate debate.
Harrison currently serves as president of the New Jersey Political Science Association. She also served as president of the National Women’s Caucus for Political Science, a section chair of the Northeast Political Science Association, and as president of the Midwest Women’s Caucus for Political Science. Her research interests include Congress and the Presidency, campaigns and elections, and American public opinion. She is an expert on the politics of the Millennial Generation. She received her B.A. from Stockton University, her M.A. from Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey, and her Ph.D. from Temple University, where she was a national MENSA graduate fellow.
Inducted into the Atlantic County Women’s Hall of fame in 2009, she also was the recipient of the “Distinguished Alumna of the Year” from the Richard Stockton College Council of Black Faculty and Staff, and the Atlantic County Zonta’s “Women Who Make a Difference” award.
Working within her community, Harrison has volunteered with Doctors Without Borders/Medecins Sans Frontiers and was a charter member of the Women’s Leadership Initiative of the Atlantic County United Way. She also has served on the boards of the Atlantic County Women’s Center and the American Cancer Society – Atlantic County Unit. She is a member of the South Jersey chapter of Families with Children from China, and was the membership chair of the Smithville Elementary Parent Teacher Association for over a decade.
Legislative District 24
Senator Steve Oroho is currently serving his third term in the New Jersey State Senate. He represents the Twenty-Fourth Legislative District in the northwestern part of the state which comprises all of Sussex County, and parts of northern Warren and Morris counties.
Before entry into public office, Senator Oroho had extensive professional experience in the finance departments of top New York City firms, including work for Price Waterhouse, W.R. Grace and Company, as well as Young and Rubicam where he held the position of Senior Vice President of Finance. Senator Oroho is presently a certified financial planner with Stonebridge Capital Management.
Rhonda Schaffler is NJTV's business correspondent, providing a daily report on New Jersey's top business and financial stories. Prior to working at NJTV, she worked as a journalist for Reuters, where she traveled extensively to cover financial stories including to Nigeria, Ghana and Chile. Along the way, she interviewed numerous government officials and CEOs. She also worked at CNN as a business anchor and reporter for several programs, covering the stock market and economy.
While at CNN, she was recognized by the New York Festival awards for a series of reports on investor confidence, and helped produce an in-depth series on poverty and economic inequality. She was a winner of the 2011 Society of American Business Editors and Writers Award for Excellence in Financial Journalism, for Multimedia. Rhonda also covered business news for Bloomberg and Dow Jones and has reported on major business news stories including the financial crisis of 2008 and the 9/11 attacks on the financial district.
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Ralph Albert Thomas, CPA (DC), CGMA
CEO & Executive Director
New Jersey Society of CPAs
Ralph Albert Thomas, CPA (DC), CGMA, began his service as CEO and executive director of the NJCPA in 1999. Prior to joining NJCPA, he held various accounting-related management positions at Citibank, AT&T, Potomac Electric Power Company and PricewaterhouseCoopers. He was appointed to the inaugural American Institute of CPAs (AICPA) National Commission on Diversity and Inclusion, and subsequently the AICPA Foundation Board. Thomas is a lifetime member and former national and chapter president of the National Association of Black Accountants (NABA), was appointed chair of the National Association of State Boards of Accountancy’s (NASBA) State Society Relations Committee, and is a member of the accounting advisory boards of Lehigh, Rutgers, Seton Hall, Montclair State, Felician, Thomas Edison universities and Middlesex County College. Additionally, he was selected for the last seven years by Accounting Today as one of the “Top 100 Most Influential People in Accounting.” He is also the treasurer of Opportunity NJ. Thomas earned a B.S. in business and economics as well as an M.B.A. from Lehigh University.
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