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James E. McGreevey
New Jersey

Gov. James E. McGreevey

  • January 15, 2002 - November 15, 2004
  • Democratic
  • July 6, 1957
  • New Jersey
  • Columbia University, Georgetown University, Harvard University
  • Two children


James E. McGreevey was born in Jersey City on August 6, 1957. After graduation from St. Joseph’s High School, he received a bachelor’s degree from Columbia University and a law degree from Georgetown University. He also holds a master’s degree in education from Harvard University. After serving two years in the state assembly, in 1991 McGreevey was elected mayor of Woodbridge, New Jersey’s sixth largest municipality. His tenure saw a revitalized business district, a 40 percent reduction in the crime rate, stabilized property taxes, and improved financial management. McGreevey served in the state senate from 1994 to 1997, where he supported legislation that established a state budget cap, strict ethical standards for public officials, and health reforms, including the state law requiring insurers to pay for mammograms. He sponsored the Pollution Prevention Act and wrote the legislation creating a permanent New Jersey Commission on Holocaust Education. McGreevey was elected governor in 2001, and within two years closed a $14-billion budget gap, balancing the state budget without raising sales or income taxes. In 2003, he continued his efforts to promote job growth and make New Jersey a center for high-tech, biotech, and financial services. He revamped the state’s Business Employment Incentive Program and proposed an ambitious five-year plan to create 200,000 new jobs. The governor made an education a top priority, putting reading coaches in 100 schools and encouraging children to read through the Governor’s Book Club. In addition, New Jersey undertook the largest school construction project in the country, investing $8.6 billion over 10 years. McGreevey also restored New Jersey’s long tradition of strong environmental protection with a new emphasis on clean air and water, controlling over-development, protecting public health, and preserving the state’s natural treasures. The governor worked to make New Jersey a national leader in cancer care and research, bringing together the state’s unique resources – leading health care institutions, major pharmaceutical companies, and world-class scientists and researchers. In June 2003, McGreevey signed a landmark auto insurance reform package that changed the way auto insurance companies operate in New Jersey. McGreevey married the former Dina Matos on October 7, 2000. Their daughter, Jacqueline Matos, was born on December 7, 2001. McGreevey also has a daughter from a previous marriage, Morag Veronica, who was born on October 27, 1992.

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