Earlier this year, Montclair Councilor-At-Large and former Montclair mayor Bob Russo had said he was exploring the idea of entering the NJ gubernatorial race. Now another Montclair candidate has come forward, filing paperwork last week to become a candidate for governor.

jimjohnsonJim Johnson, who grew up in Montclair, is a graduate of Harvard College and Harvard Law School. During the Clinton Administration, Johnson held several senior positions in the United States Department of the Treasury, including Under Secretary of the Treasury for Enforcement (1998-2000) and Assistant Secretary of the Treasury for Enforcement (1996-1998). He oversaw the operations of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms, the Secret Service, the United States Customs Service, the Federal Law Enforcement Training Center, the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network and the Office of Foreign Assets Control.

At the end of the Clinton Administration after a decade of public service, Johnson returned to private practice, as a partner at Debevoise & Plimpton. Johnson is the recipient of the Alexander Hamilton Award (the Department of Treasury’s highest award, given to officials for excellence in service) and the Attorney General’s Certificate for Excellence in Prosecution. He is also listed as a member of the advisory committee on police standards for the State of New Jersey and is married to Nancy Northup, president and CEO of the Center for Reproductive Rights.

Johnson speaks to why he is running on his website:

Yesterday, I filed the paperwork to become a candidate for Governor. It’s time New Jersey started on a new journey – one where we engage our citizens in the work to renew our communities. Our democracy is at its strongest not when citizens are simply asked to validate the deals of party leaders, but rather when citizens have a choice on Election Day and a voice in the decisions that impact their daily lives. If elected, I would work with citizens across our state to rebuild the economy, restore the frayed bonds of community and revive our trust in government.

4 replies on “Montclair’s Jim Johnson Puts in Paperwork For New Jersey Gubernatorial Run”

  1. Seems like a nice guy but once outside of Montclair, Harvard Law and Clinton Administration count as two strikes…..

  2. I’m Grateful to see that Jim is running and grateful of the possibility of a leader to trust and believe in. I’ve known and admired him since our schoolmate days at MKA. Great news!

  3. As a long time resident of Montclair and as student attending MKA at the same time, thou a few years younger I can only tell you that he and his sister Margaret were some of the finest people I have ever met. As an active member of the school newspaper and editor of the yearbook I came into contact with most all students within the 8 classes I encountered. Both James and his Margaret stood out as athletes, natural leaders and very decent people. I recall having great admiration for them both, though I knew Margaret better. Decency, humility and natural leadership was evident in the hallways and playing fields of MKA by these members of the Johnson family. If asked If I would vote for James’s parents I would vote unequivocally for their success in cultivating 2 fine human beings. I have not seen James since 1980 or so but I can only say that if his character and talents did not wander or dissipate since this time, I would venture to say each and everyone of us would be extraordinarily fortunate to have James be elected and serve as Governor for this state on the basis of character alone. We all would be extremely well served to support James Johnson in his candidacy.

    Sincerely and respectfully,

    David M. Greenbaum, MKA 1982, returning proud Montclair resident 1999 to present.

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