In my career and personal life, I have worked to advance social, political and economic justice for working families and seniors. I’ve organized resistance to the Trump Administration and helped start Progressive Democratic groups.
I have been a Heights homeowner since 1999, where I live with my husband, Bill Irwin, and our two sons, who both attend Piscataway public schools. As a volunteer in our community, I have worked to make it better for us all, including spearheading the successful effort to ensure smaller class sizes in our schools.
My recent efforts to videotape Council meetings led to a free-speech victory for Piscataway. The Council had to stop using its unlawful ordinance and had to adopt a lawful one. I helped found Stop Piscataway Over-Development because I am concerned about the warehouses, noise and air pollution, and truck traffic affecting Ward 3.
As our Committeeperson, I will be a leader for our neighborhood and stand up for Ward 3 residents to ensure transparency, accountability and responsibility from our local government. Piscataway deserves leaders who will stand up for and strengthen our community so everyone thrives. My experience and background includes:
- President, MLK Intermediate Elementary School PTO (2012-2014); Current Vice President of Conackamack PTO; Current Member, PHS PTSO; Member, Knollwood PTO (2007-2014)
- Member, Wrestling Parents Auxiliary; BOE Culture, Climate and Community Relations Committee; Friend of the Library; River Road Rescue Squad supporter
- Organizer for cancer research fundraisers, 2015 Relay for Life; 2016-18 Glow for the Cure
- Masters in Public Affairs and Politics, EJB -Rutgers, 2004; Bachelor of Arts, LC-Rutgers, 1994
- Since 2013, President & CEO, Housing and Community Development Network of NJ, a state association of non-profit groups working to ensure safe, affordable homes for NJ residents by ending homelessness, providing special needs housing, stopping the foreclosure and abandoned properties crisis, funding housing counseling, and protecting Sandy survivors
- Decade of consumer advocacy at NJ Citizen Action, the state’s largest citizen watchdog organization; Helped create NJ’s Paid Family leave laws and state campaign finance reform, updated NJ’s open public meetings/records laws, organized against the privatization of Social Security, advocated for raising the minimum wage and adopting NJ’s first Millionaire’s Tax; Continuing service on NJCA Board of Directors
- Helped secure policies for smaller class sizes, food justice and protections for transgender and immigrant students
- Labor organizer with the AFL-CIO/OI, HPAE/AFT/AFL-CIO; previous member of UFCW
- 2018 Livingston Alumna Association’s Distinguished Alumna Award; 2017 Edward J. Bloustein School of Public Policy Career Achievement Award; the 2017 Golden Rose Award for Advocacy from The Rose House; 2016 honoree, NJ Assembly, Women’s History Month
Kamuela "Nikki" Tillman
Kamuela is a long-time 26-year transplant resident from the East Orange/Newark area. A single mother and a Special Education English teacher, Miss Tillman's involvement with grassroots policy and approach has empowered her to take back her voice in the democratic process and to encourage accountability and political transparency among local and federal elected officials.
The recent national election of Donald Trump and her ideology of being "sick and tired of being sick and tired" of the lack of regard for the voices and concerns of constituents, both locally and state-wide, has prompted her to take action and join with like-minded residents to become actively, passionately, and politically involved.
She wants to ensure that elected officials work amicably with their constituents to have ongoing communications about issues and concerns affecting residents of the state of New Jersey. She hopes her involvement will help spark change and increase dialogue between elected officials and the constituents they vow to represent, as well as help support people in elected positions who uphold their vow and commitment to serve the people.