Sen. Ronald Rice Credit: NJ Senate Democrats photo

Longtime New Jersey State Senator Ronald Rice announces he’s retiring from the legislature citing health reasons. Rice served in the senate for 36 years and is the longest longest-serving Black legislator in state history. He will resign on Aug. 31, according to reports.

Several elected officials have released statements praising Rice’s legacy.

Gov. Phil Murphy: “Ron Rice will leave the state Senate as one of its most transformational members, a true maverick whose legacy of legislative successes will stand clearly on its own. He understood that public office is not about doing what’s best for individual politics or promotion but what’s right for the people we serve.”

Assemblywoman Mila Jasey: “Ron is leaving behind a lasting legacy in the halls of the Statehouse in Trenton. His accomplishments, his vast knowledge of issues facing our communities, and his grit to keep getting into ‘good trouble’ make him an institution in New Jersey politics. We are unlikely to see another public servant like him. You will be missed in Trenton, my friend.”

Assembly Speaker Craig J. Coughlin: “Senator Ronald Rice is a model public servant. As a veteran, a Newark Police Officer, a Newark City Council Member, and a State Senator, he has dedicated his life to public service and worked diligently on behalf of his constituents. During his 35 years in the legislature, Senator Rice has tirelessly worked to improve the lives of countless New Jerseyans, helping to uplift our communities and make our state a better place for all.”

Senate Majority Leader M. Teresa Ruiz: “Senator Ronald L. Rice lived his commitment to public service over a lifetime of hard work, sacrifice and dedication to the residents of Newark, his legislative district and the State of New Jersey. He was a trailblazer in so many ways, from his days as a Newark police officer, to his role in Newark City government and his leadership of the Legislative Black Caucus.”

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