CRDA Appoints First Black Chairman

June 25, 2021

ATLANTIC CITY (June 25, 2021) – Modia Butler has made history by becoming the first African American to be appointed board chairman of the Casino Reinvestment Development Authority, Gov. Phil Murphy said Thursday.

Butler, who has held a seat on CRDA’s board since 2018, will replace longtime Chairman Robert Mulcahy.

“I am pleased to bring a new voice and energy to the CRDA board,” Butler said in a statement. “Together we will work with the City of Atlantic City and other stakeholders to make a difference in the future of Atlantic City.”

Mulcahy’s seat on the board was replaced by Michael Beson, said Karen Martin, communications director for the CRDA.

Two additional board seats were filled or replaced, Martin said. Brett Matik of Linwood, replaces Howard Kyle. While William Sproule of Galloway, replaces Frank Spencer.

Mulcahy told The Press he is happy with the projects he’s been a part of during his tenure on the board.

“I’ve felt a great deal of satisfaction in attempting to accomplish some of the things that need to be done in Atlantic City,” he said. “We are by no means done, but I think we’re focused in the right direction. I’m pleased to have been a part of that change and those accomplishments.”

Butler works at Mercury Public Affairs and has experience in government relations, political campaigns and strategic communications in New Jersey and Washington, D.C.

Prior to joining Mercury, Butler served as chief of staff to U.S. Sen. Cory Booker, D-N.J. Butler also was chief of staff for Booker when he was the mayor of Newark.

“Atlantic City residents could not be in better hands than with Mo Butler,” Murphy said. “Mo’s integrity and extensive experience will benefit the residents of Atlantic City and the mission of the CRDA.”

Murphy also thanked Mulcahy for his “many years of service to the CRDA and the state at large.”

Butler’s appointment will bring much needed diversity to the upper ranks of the CRDA, Mayor Marty Small Sr. said.

“I am extremely excited that Mo Butler is named the first African American chairman of CRDA,” Small said. “Mo will be a great asset to the great City of Atlantic City, and I look forward to working with him and getting support for our agenda for the good people of Atlantic City.”

Councilman Kaleem Shabazz, who also serves as president of the local branch of the NAACP, echoed Small’s excitement.

“The appointment of Mo Butler is a significant step in increasing diversity and inclusion in CRDA,” Shabazz said. “Mo is a competent advocate for development and equality, and he will be an important influencer in making Atlantic City better. The NAACP applauds this announcement.”

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