N.J. Hall of Fame announces nominees for public voting process

The New Jersey Hall of Fame has announced its 50 nominees for the 2021 public vote.

The nominees to the hall, now based in Newark, are listed in five categories: Arts & Letters, Enterprise, Performing Arts, Public Service and Sports. Business and political leaders on the list include well-known names such as Denise Morrison, former CEO of Campbell Soup Co., and state Sen. Loretta Weinberg (D-Teaneck), among many others.

Click here to vote through Memorial Day.

Final inductees will be announced in June, with an induction ceremony scheduled for a virtual event in October.

“We are excited to once again highlight the depth and variety of the Garden State,” NJHOF Chairman Jon F. Hanson said in a prepared statement. “New Jerseyans will truly have their work cut out for them in choosing among these incredible nominees.”

The nominees are, according to the NJHOF:

Arts & Letters

  • George Walker, Pulitzer Prize-winning composer, pianist and organist
  • Gay Talese, writer and journalist
  • Alfred Stieglitz, photographer and modern art promoter
  • Dorothy Porter Wesley, librarian, bibliographer and curator
  • Anne Lindbergh, author and aviator
  • John F. Nash Jr., mathematician who made fundamental contributions to game theory, differential geometry, and the study of partial differential equations
  • Dorothea Lange, documentary photographer and photojournalist
  • Thomas Fleming, historian and author of over forty nonfiction and fiction titles
  • Junot Díaz, Pulitzer Prize-winning writer who focuses on the immigrant experience in America
  • Margaret Bourke-White, the first American female war photojournalist


  • Paul A. Volcker Jr., 12th Chair of the Federal Reserve under Presidents Carter and Reagan
  • Sara Spencer Washington, founder of Apex News and Hair Company named one of the “Most Distinguished Businesswomen” at the 1939 New York World’s Fair
  • Louise Scott-Roundtree, established successful chain of beauty salons in Newark and city’s first African-American female millionaire
  • Henry Rowan, engineer and philanthropist
  • Denise M. Morrison, former president and CEO of Campbell Soup Co.
  • The Mars family, owners of confectionery company Mars Inc.
  • Madeline McWhinney Dale, first female officer and vice president of the Federal Reserve Bank
  • Clive Cummis, founder of one of NJ’s largest law firms and influential Democratic fundraiser
  • Elizabeth Coleman White, agricultural specialist who developed the first cultivated blueberry
  • James E. Burke, former CEO of Johnson & Johnson

Performing Arts

  • Patti Smith and Lenny Kaye: Smith is a singer-songwriter, musician, author and poet who was part of the New York City punk rock movement in the 1970s; Kaye is a musician, writer, record producer and guitarist for Smith from her band’s inception in 1974
  • Bebe Neuwirth, Emmy winning-actress, singer and dancer
  • Marilyn McCoo, lead female vocalist of the 5th Dimension
  • Buddy Hackett, actor and comedian
  • Lesley Gore, singer, songwriter, actress, and activist
  • Brian De Palma, film director and screenwriter
  • Sarah Dash, award-winning vocalist who co-founded Patti LaBelle & the Bluebelles
  • David Copperfield, magician
  • The Jonas Brothers, popular pop band made up of brothers Kevin, Joe and Nick Jonas
  • George Benson, jazz guitarist, singer, and songwriter

Public Service

  • Loretta Weinberg, New Jersey Senate majority leader
  • Richard Stockton, lawyer, jurist, legislator and a signer of the Declaration of Independence
  • George P. Shultz, economist, diplomat, and businessman serving under three GOP presidents
  • Antonin Scalia, associate justice of the U.S. Supreme Court from 1986 until his death in 2016
  • Gustave F. Perna, Army four-star general & CEO of the federal COVID-19 response for vaccine and therapeutics
  • William Paterson, signer of the U.S. Constitution, associate justice of the U.S. Supreme Court and 2nd governor of New Jersey
  • David Mixner, political activist and author
  • Richard J. Hughes, 45th governor of New Jersey, chief justice of the New Jersey Supreme Court
  • Margaret Bancroft, founder of the Haddonfield Bancroft Training School for the multiply disabled
  • Alexander Hamilton, founding father and first secretary of the treasury


  • Lawrence Taylor, “L.T.,” former linebacker for the New York Giants
  • Phil Simms, two-time Super Bowl champion and quarterback for the New York Giants
  • Bill Parcells, two-time Super Bowl head coach for the New York Giants
  • Heather Ann O’Reilly, three-time Olympic gold medalist and FIFA Women’s World Cup winner for the U.S. women’s national soccer team
  • John J. McMullen, naval architect, businessman, marine engineer and former owner of the New Jersey Devils and Houston Astros
  • Ron Jaworski, former Philadelphia Eagles quarterback and NFL analyst
  • Monte Irvin, left and right fielder in the Negro leagues and Major League Baseball who played with the Newark Eagles, New York Giants and Chicago Cubs
  • Craig Biggio, seven-time National League All-Star second baseman, outfielder and catcher for the Houston Astros
  • Al Attles, longtime basketball player and coach for the Golden State Warriors
  • Valerie B. Ackerman, first president of the Women’s National Basketball Association