Cory Anthony Booker is an American politician and the junior United States Senator from New Jersey. At the time of his election to the Senate, he was the Mayor of Newark. Booker was born in Washington, D.C. and then raised in Harrington Park, New Jersey. He attended Stanford University, where he received a Bachelor of Arts in political science and a Master of Arts in sociology, before earning a Rhodes Scholarship to attend the University of Oxford. Upon returning home, he earned his Juris Doctor in 1997 from Yale Law School, where he operated free legal clinics for low-income residents of New Haven, Connecticut. At Yale, Booker was a founding member of the Chai Society (now the Eliezer Society), as well as being a "Big Brother" with Big Brothers Big Sisters of America.
Booker began his political career as a Newark City Councilor from 1998 to 2002. He ran for Mayor in 2002, but lost to incumbent Sharpe James; he ran again in 2006 and won against deputy mayor Ronald Rice. During his tenure as Mayor, his priorities were reducing crime and encouraging economic development projects. He gained a national reputation for his personal involvement in public service, particularly through his use of social media tools such as Twitter to connect with constituents.
Considered one of the most prominent Democrats in New Jersey, he became a candidate for the United States Senate in the 2013 special election to succeed Frank Lautenberg, who died in office. He won the Senate Democratic primary on August 13, 2013 and then won the general election against Steve Lonegan on October 16, 2013, becoming the first black U.S. Senator from New Jersey.