Zuckerman ascends to president of Downtown New Jersey

JERSEY CITY, NJ — South Orange’s Bob Zuckerman has ascended to the role of president at Downtown New Jersey, joining the organization’s new vice presidents, treasurer and secretary.

“All of our new officers embody the spirit of downtown revitalization and bring talent, expertise, and energy to the table. We are very fortunate to have them lead the charge as we continue to strengthen New Jersey’s downtowns,” said Courtenay Mercer, executive director of Downtown New Jersey.

Zuckerman steps into the role of president, after a long tenure by outgoing President Bob Goldsmith. 

“I’ve been proud of guiding Downtown New Jersey, a wonderful organization that intersects well with downtown revitalization and redevelopment efforts,” Goldsmith said. “I’m excited Bob Zuckerman is assuming leadership of the organization — and keeping ‘Bob’ as a prerequisite for this leadership position.”

Zuckerman was elected to the South Orange Board of Trustees in May 2019. Immediately prior to running for and winning elective office, Zuckerman served for almost six years as the executive director of the South Orange Village Center Alliance. During his tenure, more than two-dozen new businesses opened downtown, several of which Zuckerman personally recruited. Prior to leading SOVCA, Zuckerman served as executive director of the Lower East Side Business Improvement District in New York City, where he led that organization’s efforts to attract more shoppers, diners, businesses and investment in one of the city’s most rapidly changing neighborhoods.

“I am excited to serve Downtown New Jersey as its new president in 2020, and I’m thrilled that the Board of Directors has put their faith in me to lead the organization into the new year,” Zuckerman said. “We look forward to continuing to work with the Murphy administration and the legislature on innovative programs and initiatives that will benefit all of our downtown districts throughout the state. I also want to congratulate Bob Goldsmith on his successful tenure as president of the organization for many years and look forward to working with him, our entire board and executive director in the new year to ensure that our downtowns continue to thrive despite today’s challenging retail environment.”

In addition to the new officers, the Downtown New Jersey board of directors welcomed some new members, including Julie Doran, executive director of SOVCA. Prior to her work in South Orange, Doran managed the Maplewood Village Alliance from 2008 until 2017, and the Springfield Avenue Partnership from 2013 to 2019.

“Downtown managers often work independently or with only a small staff, so the access to resources and networking opportunities provided by Downtown New Jersey are invaluable to our work,” Doran said. “I’m very much looking forward to working on the board of directors to contribute to that platform.”