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Lawrence Hamm for U.S. Senate 2024

Lawrence Hamm

Human Rights & Civil Rights Activist, Humanitarian, Public Speaker

Lawrence Hamm has been a relentless advocate for African-Americans and the cause of human rights and civil rights for all oppressed people for more than 52 years. 


Raised in Newark New Jersey, he attended public schools and emerged at age 17 as a forceful and articulate spokesperson for the educational needs and aspirations of Newark students and the community. He was appointed to the Newark Board of Education, making him at that time the youngest voting school board member in the history of the United States. At the age of 20 he was also the youngest person to ever qualify as a candidate for councilman in the City of Newark. 


He received his bachelor's degree and graduated cum laude from Princeton University in 1978.  While at Princeton University Larry was an organizer of the campus anti-apartheid movement.  He organized daily student protests and a sit-in of more than 200 students calling attention to Princeton’s financial investment in apartheid South Africa. These protests, and the rising tide of public indignation, resulted in Princeton University’s divestment in the apartheid South African economy. 


His impact as a student activist at Princeton is chronicled in the documentary film, “Blacks at Princeton.”  He was given the honor of Addressing the United Nations Special Committee Against Apartheid.  Upon graduation, he received various awards at Princeton for his activism and humanitarian efforts.  He also has a master's degree in business administration.


After graduation, Mr. Hamm returned to Newark to continue his activism.  He has served as president of the 24th District Assembly; founder and director of the People’s Energy Cooperative, a community fuel oil cooperative; Director of the Community Organization Program of the United Church of Christ, Commission for Racial Justice; a leader in the New Jersey Anti-Apartheid Coalition; co-chairman of Jesse Jackson's presidential campaign in New Jersey; president of the New Jersey Rainbow Coalition; coordinator of the Malcolm X Commemoration Coalition; chairman of the New Jersey Million Man March Coalition; and president of the New Jersey Chapter of the Conference of Minority Transportation Officials. 


He is a founder and current Chairman of the People’s Organization For Progress (POP), a statewide, independent, grass roots organization. POP works for racial, social, economic justice and peace. Established in 1982 POP has been in existence for 40 years. As Chairman, he has consistently worked toward building unity among community organizations. The struggle for quality education, employment opportunities, access to health care and against racial profiling and police brutality continues through the efforts of its Chairman and the activism of the organization’s members.  


Under his leadership, POP conducted a 381-day campaign of daily protests for jobs, peace, equality, and justice. He has been leading POP's Justice Mondays protests against police brutality  at the federal building in Newark on Mondays for the past 5 years. Most recently, he led a 67 mile march to Trenton, New Jersey, the state capital to protest police brutality and to demand passage of police reform legislation. 


Larry Hamm is quoted in the press, and interviewed on television and radio.  His activities have also been discussed in a number of books including Nation Within A Nation by Komozi Woodard and Crashing The Party by Ralph Nader.  He has appeared in documentary films, including "Revolution 67," which focuses on the 1967 Newark Rebellion.


Over the years he has received many leadership and service awards.  In 2015, Mr. Hamm received the Key To The City Of Newark from Mayor Ras Baraka. In 2016, he was a National Education Association Human And Civil Rights Award Winner, receiving the organization's Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Award. In 2020, Mr Hamm was a candidate for United States Senator in the New Jersey Democratic Primary Election. 


During each year from 2017 to 2021, he was placed on Insider NJ’s Insider 100: Power List of influential people in New Jersey. He was included on Insider NJ’s African-American Political Power List In Honor Of Black History Month every year from 2018 to 2022. In 2020, 2021, and 2022 he was included on Insider NJ’s Insider 100 Policymakers.


Mr. Hamm is in demand as a public speaker and has addressed audiences throughout the United States and in other countries.  He is the proud father of three daughters, Laini Hamm, Nia Hamm-Clark, and Imani Hamm, all of whom are college graduates. And he is the proud grandfather of a new born grandson Eli Clark, the first child his daughter Nia and her husband Jason Clark. 

Mailing Address:  P.O. Box  25414, Newark, NJ    07101

To Volunteer, call 973-332.6195

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