Lt. Gov. Sheila Oliver dies after hospitalization for undisclosed medical issue

Oliver had been serving as acting governor prior to her hospitalization while the governor was away in Italy with his family.

News 12 Staff

Aug 1, 2023, 4:36 PM

Updated 261 days ago

Share:

Lt. Gov. Sheila Oliver has died after being hospitalized for an undisclosed medical issue, according to Gov. Phil Murphy's office.
Oliver had been serving as acting governor prior to her hospitalization while the governor was away in Italy with his family. He will be returning to New Jersey as soon as possible.
"Tammy and I, and our children, are incredibly saddened and distraught to learn of the passing of our dear friend, colleague, and partner in government, Lt. Gov. Sheila Oliver," Murphy said in a statement.
No cause of death was given. Oliver was 71 years old.
In 2010, Oliver became the first black woman to serve as Assembly speaker, before losing the position to Assemblyman Vincent Prieto in 2013.
She served in the Assembly since 2004 and was on the Essex County board of chosen freeholders from 1996 to 1999. She was born and raised in Newark and has a sociology degree from Pennsylvania’s Lincoln University.
Essex County Executive Joseph DiVincenzo remembers Lt. Gov. Oliver
She was twice elected lieutenant governor alongside Murphy beginning in 2017 and again in 2021. Oliver was just the second person to hold the post of lieutenant governor, a newer state government position that began under previous Gov. Chris Christie.
It was unclear who would immediately succeed her. State Senate President Nick Scutari assumed the role of acting governor Monday morning following Oliver's hospitalization.
Scutari will remain as acting governor until Murphy returns to New Jersey.
WATCH: Discussing the legacy of Lt. Gov. Shelia Oliver and what comes next
Under the state constitution, Murphy will have 45 days to choose a new lieutenant governor.
Details of funeral services for Oliver were not immediately made available.
The Associated Press Wire Services contributed to this report. 


More from News 12