Public Servant-in-Residence Named

Former New Jersey Governor Richard J. Codey was named as the Public Servant-in-Residence for the 2017-2018 academic year. Codey will be present on campus throughout the fall and spring semesters to provide insight through his lectures on the importance of public service.

The Department Chair of Political Science and Sociology, Dr. Ken Mitchell said, “Former Governor Codey has agreed to be present on campus for four days to share his honest opinion on the challenges that students will be faced with when committing to a career in law.”

The University was notified about the chosen Public Servant-in-Residence in a letter composed by University President Grey J. Dimenna, Esq. According to the letter, the former governor was sworn into the New Jersey State legislature at age 27 and has served his state since Jan. 8, 1974. Monmouth University’s Public Servant-in-Residence was New Jersey’s 53rd governor, and served from 2004 to 2006.

During his time as governor of “The Garden State,” Codey championed a bill to ban smoking from indoor spaces in the state, increased funding for stem-cell research, mental health, and sports. Codey also worked towards putting an end to steroid abuse in high school and college sports throughout the state by mandating state-funded drug tests. As one of the longest-standing assembly members, Codey has become a strong proponent of improving mental health care throughout the state.

Codey will impart his expertise and wisdom on the student body to encourage the youth of New Jersey to act as public servants for issues they are passionate about.

The Public Servant-in-Residence program was created in 2000 with this sole purpose. The University’s Department of Political Science and Sociology sponsors the initiative, and are strong proponents of the knowledge that students can acquire from civic leaders.

Dr. Mitchell believes that universities are in place to help students form new ideas by putting them in contact with people they normally would not have the opportunity to meet.

“The goal of the program is to make Monmouth students more comfortable with speaking to high power individuals by placing them in an intimate environment with these professionals,” said Dr. Mitchell.

President of the Political Science club, James Hawk introduced Codey as the new Public Servant-in-Residence of Monmouth University at the event this past Friday, Sept. 29. “It is not every day that you have the honor of having the ex-governor come to campus. Governor Codey is the textbook definition of an exemplary public servant, which is evident within his incredible work fighting on behalf of those with mental illness. The event was a great success and the university could not have chosen a better guest,” said Hawk.

Hawk is one student amongst the many members of the Monmouth University community that are excited to expand their knowledge outside of the classroom to learn from a professional that has been successful in their desired field of study.

Francesca Vaccaro, a senior political science student, believes that the university chose an exemplary candidate to serve as Public Servant-in-Residence. “Former governor Codey can provide the University with an insight, expertise, and guidance that not many others can. As a former governor, Mr. Codey can give students a true indication of how life as a public servant is without worrying about filtering his insight at the cost of an election.” Vaccaro, an aspiring public servant continues, “I could not be more thrilled to listen and learn from such a fine example and governor.” 

Former New Jersey Governor Richard J. Codey is amongst the selected prestigious public officials that were named as Monmouth University’s Public Servant-in-Residence in the past. “We have had supreme court justices, governors, and senior politicians that have been willing to share their honest opinion with students,” said Dr. Mitchell.

The Public Servant-in-Residence program continues to inspire young professionals that are interested in pursuing a career in law. In this position, former governor Codey will impact and encourage of civic service throughout the Monmouth University community.