About DCR | NJ Commission on Civil Rights

NJ Civil Rights Commission

The LAD created the Commission on Civil Rights to “consult with and advise the Attorney General with respect to the work” of the Division on Civil Rights. The LAD states that the Commission shall “report to the Governor and the Legislature with respect to such matters relating to the work of the [DCR] and at such times as it may deem in the public interest.” The Commission is comprised of seven members who are appointed by the Governor with the advice and consent of the Senate. Each serves a 5-year term and is not compensated for his or her service. The Commission meets regularly with the DCR Director and the Division’s chief counsel so members can be kept apprised of agency initiatives. Individual Commissioners also support DCR events, such as community roundtables and conferences, and serve as liaisons to various communities including public and private entities committed to eradicating discrimination and fostering public awareness of compliance to civil rights laws.

2023 Commission Meetings

Wednesday, February 15, 2023 at 11:00 a.m.


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Meeting ID: 242 221 428 46
Passcode: XDAmu4
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+1 856-288-3130,,772716403#
United States, Camden
Phone Conference ID: 772 716 403#
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Wednesday, May 10, 2023 at 10:00 a.m.

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Meeting ID: 258 613 012 721
Passcode: iZyjLE
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+1 856-288-3130,,439428987#   United States, Camden
Phone Conference ID: 439 428 987#
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Wednesday, September 13, 2023 at 10:00 a.m.


Wednesday, December 13, 2023 at 10:00 a.m.

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Meeting ID: 257 216 396 307
Passcode: n3TerH
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+1 856-288-3130,,201803696#   United States, Camden
Phone Conference ID: 201 803 696#
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Commission Members
John Traier
Wayne, NJ
John Traier is a partner in Jimenez & Traier, a certified public accounting firm in Wayne, NJ. John has devoted over two decades to public service and volunteerism including serving as: the Chairman of the Passaic County Regular Republican Organization; an appointed member to the Passaic County Board of Elections; Vice President of Finance for the New Jersey LGBT Chamber of Commerce; a Committeeman for the New Jersey Republican State Committee, and Treasurer of Theater League of Clifton, among a host of other positions. John graduated from Rutgers with an undergraduate degree in accounting and an M.B.A.


Richard T. Smith
Vineland, NJ
Richard T. Smith was appointed in 2004. Commissioner Smith is the Warden for the Cumberland County Jail. He also serves as President of New Jersey Chapter of the NAACP. Commissioner Smith has served on the Vineland Board of Education and was an elected member of the Cumberland County Democratic Executive Committee of the City of Vineland.


Clara C. Fernandez
Elizabeth, NJ
Born in Oriente, Cuba, Commissioner Fernández immigrated to the United States in 1970 and became a naturalized citizen in 1979. A resident of Union County, she received her B.A. from Rutgers University and her M.A. from The Catholic University of America, in Washington D.C. Commissioner Fernández is employed as Constituent Relations Director to New Jersey’s 20th Legislative District. She serves on the Union County Cultural and Heritage Commission Advisory Board, of which she is presently the Chairperson.


Nita Raval
Lodi, NJ
Commissioner Raval, Esq. is an attorney who was appointed to the Commission in 2004. She is in private practice in Hoboken, New Jersey and has been admitted to practice since 1997. Ms. Raval received her undergraduate degree from Seton Hall University and her law degree from Seton Hall University, School of Law. She is a Partner in the law firm of Florio & Kenny, L.L.P. where she has litigated various claims involving civil rights and employment issues. She was appointed by Governor Richard Codey to serve as a member of the New Jersey State Acupuncture Examining Board in 2006. Additionally, she was appointed by the New Jersey Supreme Court to serve on the District VI Attorney Ethics Board. She is an active member in the Gujarati community in North Jersey.


Dr. Joan Rivitz
Paramus, NJ
Commissioner Rivitz was appointed in 2003. She is an educational consultant in private practice and specializes in matters of bias and prejudice. Dr. Rivitz is the Chair of the Advisory Board of the New Jersey Human Relations Council and is a member of the New Jersey Commission on Holocaust Education staff. She is a committee member of the New Jersey Cares About Bullying Campaign and works on the Train the Trainers project of the Office of Bias Crime. She also works on Character Education projects, statewide. Dr. Rivitz was instrumental in the formulation of the highly successful New Jersey Bias Crime Victims Support Service as well as the training of personnel.


Patrica Perkins-Auguste Commissioner
Patrica Perkins-Auguste
Commissioner Patricia Perkins-Auguste currently is the longest consecutive member of the Elizabeth City Council and the only female member of the nine member local legislative body for the past 11 years. A constant advocate for women, children and family empowerment, Commissioner Perkins-Auguste served as the Past President of the NAACP Elizabeth Branch and a former member of the State NAACP. A founding member of the Union County Human Rights Commission under the former Prosecutor the late Andrew K. Ruotolo Jr. and a founding member of the National Council of Negro Women Greater Elizabeth Area Section. A member of Metropolitan Baptist Church, Commissioner Perkins-Auguste participates in the work of the church through ministry to develop and enhance the greater community surrounding the church neighborhood and the state of New Jersey. A current member of the State Democratic Party and a former member of the National Democratic Committee, Commissioner Perkins-Auguste participated in the National Democratic Convention as a member of the Platform Committee and recently as a Delegate for President Barack H. Obama’s nomination for his second term. Awards, Accolades, Recognitions and Non Profit Board Memberships are too numerous to mention to highlight nearly three decades of volunteerism and public service, all for the greater good, for communities throughout the State of New Jersey


Commissioner (2003 to 2018)
John Crowell Campbell
Edison, NJ
Commissioner from 2003 to 2018. Seat vacant.
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