Gov. Phil Murphy (D) announced Thursday that Modia “Mo” Butler has been named Chairman of the state’s Casino Reinvestment Development Authority Board (CRDA).
Butler, who has held a seat on the Board since November 2018, is the first African American to be named Chairman in CRDA history.
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“The CRDA’s important efforts to increase economic development, improve equity, and address quality of life issues for Atlantic City residents could not be in better hands than with Mo Butler,” Murphy said in a news release. “Mo’s integrity and extensive experience will benefit the residents of Atlantic City and the mission of the CRDA. I look forward to working with him in his new capacity as CRDA Chair. I would also like to thank Bob Mulcahy for his many years of service to the CRDA and the state at large.”
Butler, who is a highly-respected expert for Mercury Public Affairs with extensive experience in government relations, political campaigns, and strategic communications in New Jersey and Washington, D.C., advises clients across various sectors, including government, real estate development, education, healthcare, infrastructure, and nonprofits.
He also served as Chief of Staff to New Jersey and United States Sen. Cory Booker (D), where he was responsible for overseeing the Senator’s state operations and advised the Senator on national and state affairs. Under Butler’s leadership, the Senate office helped jumpstart the Gateway Project in Newark, secured funding for relief after Hurricane Sandy to rebuild New Jersey’s shoreline, and led historic sentencing reform efforts. Butler also served as a Senior Advisor to Booker during his previous and current three campaigns for United States Senate and his presidential bid, Cory 2020.
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“I am pleased to bring a new voice and energy to the CRDA Board,” said Butler, who received his B.A. from Franklin and Marshall College and Master’s Degree from the Eagleton Institute of Politics at Rutgers University. “Together we will work with the City of Atlantic City and other stakeholders to make a difference in the future of Atlantic City.”
Butler was also Booker’s Chief of Staff in Newark when he was mayor and was responsible for overseeing the daily operations of Newark while managing a workforce of 3,000 public employees. Under Butler’s leadership in the Booker Administration, Newark saw its first population increase in 60 years, its first new residential high-rise tower in 50 years and the first new downtown hotel in 40 years. He was also responsible for implementing the mayor’s public safety initiatives that led to a drastic reduction in crime and sought to address the underlying structural causes of violence.
“I am extremely excited that Mo Butler is named the first African American Chairman of CRDA and we now have much-needed diversity in the upper ranks of CRDA,” Atlantic City Mayor Marty Small said. “Mo will be a great asset to the great city of Atlantic City and I look forward to working with him and getting support for our agenda for the good people of Atlantic City.”