Modia Butler Named CRDA Board Chairman

CRDA - Casino Reinvestment Development Authority - Atlantic City Beach and Lifeguard Stand photo.
June 24, 2021

~ First African American Board Chairman in CRDA history ~

ATLANTIC CITY, NJ  (June 24, 2021) – Modia Butler has been named Chairman of the Casino Reinvestment Development Authority (CRDA) Board as announced by Governor Phil Murphy.

Mo Butler has held a seat on the CRDA Board since November 2018. Butler is a highly respected public affairs expert with extensive experience in government relations, political campaigns, and strategic communications in New Jersey and Washington, D.C. At Mercury Public Affairs, Butler advises clients across various sectors including Government, Real Estate Development, Education, Healthcare, Infrastructure, and Not for Profits.


“The CRDA’s important efforts to increase economic development, improve equity, and address quality of life issues for Atlantic City residents could not be in better hands than with Mo Butler,” said Governor Murphy. “Mo’s integrity and extensive experience will benefit the residents of Atlantic City and the mission of the CRDA. I look forward to working with him in his new capacity as CRDA Chair. I would also like to thank Bob Mulcahy for his many years of service to the CRDA and the state at large.”


Prior to joining Mercury Public Affairs, Butler served as the Chief of Staff to United States Senator Cory Booker (D-NJ). In that capacity, Butler was responsible for overseeing the Senator’s state operations and advised the Senator on national and state affairs. Under Butler’s leadership, the Senate office helped jumpstart the Gateway Project, secured funding for Sandy relief to rebuild New Jersey’s shoreline and led historic sentencing reform efforts. Butler also served as a Senior Advisor to Senator Cory Booker during his previous and current three campaigns for United States Senate and his presidential bid, Cory 2020.


“Mo Butler is a phenomenal choice to chair the CRDA Board. He cares about strengthening neighborhoods, developing our youth, and expanding economic opportunities for working families, which align with the CRDA’s mission under the Murphy Administration,” said Lt. Governor Sheila Oliver, who serves as Commissioner of the New Jersey Department of Community Affairs and sits on the CRDA Board. “Plus, Mo has a passion for cities and the diversity and cultural richness they bring to people’s lives, so I know he feels at home in Atlantic City. I look forward to Mo’s leadership of the CRDA Board and I can’t wait to see the progress the CRDA achieves under his direction.”


“We are privileged to have Mo Butler serve as Chairman of the CRDA Board of Directors,” said Executive Director Matt Doherty. “His experience in business and dedication to the CRDA Board will benefit the projects, programs and development that CRDA brings to Atlantic City.


Prior to serving in the U.S. Senate, Butler was Chief of Staff in Newark, N.J. to then Mayor, Cory Booker. In that role, Butler was responsible for overseeing the daily operations of the City of Newark while managing a workforce of 3,000 public employees. Under Butler’s leadership in the Booker Administration, Newark saw its first population increase in 60 years, its first new residential high-rise tower in 50 years and the first new downtown hotel in 40 years. Butler was also responsible for implementing the Mayor’s public safety initiatives that led to a drastic reduction in crime and sought to address the underlying structural causes of violence.


“I am extremely excited that Mo Butler is named the first African American Chairman of CRDA and we now have much needed diversity in the upper ranks of CRDA,” said City of Atlantic City Mayor Marty Small, Sr. “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.”


“The appointment of Mo Butler is a significant step in increasing diversity and inclusion in CRDA,” said Branch President of the NAACP Atlantic City Chapter, Kaleem Shabazz. “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,” he added.


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


Butler received his BA from Franklin and Marshall College and Masters Degree from the Eagleton Institute of Politics at Rutgers University. Butler currently serves as a Trustee at his Alma Mater Franklin & Marshall College and New Jersey Performing Arts Center (NJPAC).



About the Casino Reinvestment Development Authority

The only agency of its kind nationwide, the CRDA has used Atlantic City casino reinvestments as a catalyst for meaningful, positive improvement in the lives of New Jersey residents since 1984. Under the 2011 Tourism District Act, the Authority’s mission evolved from statewide projects to becoming the state’s key economic development agency for Atlantic City. CRDA’s expanded responsibilities now include land use regulation, tourism marketing and clean and safe initiatives. The CRDA also oversees Historic Boardwalk Hall (the leading entertainment venue of its size in the country) and the Atlantic City Convention Center. In total, CRDA has invested nearly $2 billion in more than 400 projects statewide, of which $1.8 billion has been invested in Atlantic City, spurring business investments and expansions, and creating permanent jobs in the process. For more information about CRDA and our projects, visit, and follow us on Facebook and Twitter.


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