Cori A. Herbig

1. What is your educational and volunteer background?
I have a law degree and certificate in Environmental Law from Pace Law School and was the Managing Editor of the Pace Law Review. I graduated with high honors from Rutgers University with a degree in Philosophy and certificate in Criminology.

2. Why did you choose to run for council?
I chose to run for council because as a gun safety advocate, I am tired of seeing our leaders at all levels of government play political games when it comes to the important issues. I have worked tirelessly to ensure that our communities are safe from gun violence and that our children are safe in their schools. I want to be part of that solution, and I want to leave a lasting legacy by working with local law enforcement, school administrators, mental health experts, and the Board of Education to make sure that proper steps are taken to keep Parsippany’s schools safe.

3. What do you feel the biggest issue facing Parsippany today?
The biggest issue I see facing Parsippany today is that the current council members aren’t thinking about or listening to the people who live here. They aren’t asking the people who live here what they think about important issues like balancing development with the protection of natural resources, taxes, and school safety. And, they certainly aren’t listening to the community.

4. Why did you decide to run now?
I’ve watched from afar since moving to Parsippany in 2013 as our town council members fail to act in the best interest of Parsippany families time and time again. I’ve watched them squander taxpayer dollars on vendetta-driven lawsuits, work to divide our community instead of bringing us together, and throw blame at others instead of doing what they can and should do to move Parsippany forward. It’s time for new ideas and perspectives that will help bring Parsippany into the future in a way that unites us. I am committed to doing that.

5. What specific skills will you bring to the table if elected?
As a career legislative strategist, I know what it takes to build consensus and get things done. I understand every facet of governing, from drafting new laws to moving them through the legislative process, and I know how to build buy in in a way that leaves everyone feeling like they’ve accomplished something meaningful together.  As an advocate, I know how important it is for lawmakers to be transparent with and accountable to the people they were elected to serve.  It is time for the council to show all residents, regardless of age, gender, party affiliation, religion, or way of life, that they have an equal voice here in Parsippany.

6. What new programs or initiatives would you like to start if elected?
There are so many possibilities for programs to start if elected, that it’s hard to focus in on just one.  I think the one I’m most excited about is a program I’d like to introduce to engage our young people. So many kids don’t understand what civic engagement is, and even those that do aren’t always sure how to go about getting involved. I’d like to start a program that invites students from Parsippany’s schools to come before the council and propose an ordinance that they’d like to see the town adopt. I’m certain that we will get a ton of creative and inspiring ideas, in addition to helping to bring along the next generation of civic leaders in our town.

7. What are you passionate about?
I’m passionate about so many things – gun violence prevention, social justice, animal welfare… The list goes on. At its core though, most of my passions stem from a foundational belief in the value and importance of kindness and empathy. Too often we get caught up in the day to day and lose sight of each other’s humanity. If we keep our focus on people as individuals, and what our decisions mean to their daily lives, the rest falls into place much more easily. This is true at every level of engagement, from daily interactions with people in public places like stores and restaurants to the most heated interactions about controversial political topics. If we take a step back and see the humanity in each other, it’s much easier to see what we all have in common, rather than our differences.

8. What is the best thing about Parsippany?
The best thing about Parsippany without a doubt is the diversity and warm nature of its residents. I have met thousands of people from all walks of life around town, and I have been blown away by how kind everyone has been. If there’s one thing that knocking on so many doors has taught me, it’s that people in our town care! If you ask them what’s working and not working for them right now, they’ll tell you.

9. What are your hobbies/interests?
To be honest, I don’t have a lot of time for hobbies. I work full time, I’m running for office, and I have two young kids at home. Most of my “free” time is spent with my family at the kids’ activities. In the rare moments that I do have some personal time, I enjoy reading and catching up with childhood friends who I don’t see nearly often enough.

10. What is your professional background?
I currently work as the Director of State Government Affairs at Everytown for Gun Safety where I work every day to pass lifesaving gun violence prevention policies throughout the country. Before that, I worked at the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) for 13 years, where I advocated for animal welfare. Immediately after graduating law school, I worked for a year as a Legal Services housing attorney, fighting to keep low income families from being unlawfully evicted from their homes.

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