Bonnie Watson Coleman

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Bonnie Watson Coleman
New Jersey General Assembly District 15
In office
1998 - Present
Term ends
January 2014
Years in position 17
Base salary$49,000/year
Elections and appointments
Last electionNovember 8, 2011
First elected1997
Next generalNovember 5, 2013
Term limitsN/A
Bachelor'sThomas Edison State College
Date of birth02/06/1945
Place of birthCamden, NJ
Office website
Bonnie Watson Coleman is the Democratic Majority Leader of the New Jersey General Assembly, representing the 15th District since 1998. She was Majority Leader from 2006-2009.

Prior to her election to the Assembly, she served as assistant commissioner on the New Jersey Department of Community Affairs in 1992 and bureau chief in 1980. From 1974-1980 she was the director of the New Jersey Department of Transportation. [1]

Committee assignments



  • A375 Raises age requirement of compulsory school attendance from 16 to 18 years old.
  • A1558 Requires developers to offer solar energy systems in certain new home construction.
  • A1741 Provides for receipt for voter at primary or general election; allows receipt to be proof of eligibility to vote in subsequent election; provides State reimbursement.
  • A1774 Raises minimum wage to $8.25, then makes annual adjustments based on CPI increases.[2]

National Political Awareness Test

Coleman's answers to the New Jersey State Legislative Election 2005 National Political Awareness Test are available. When asked her top priorities, she stated,

I will continue to advance legislation which promotes the construction of affordable housing, so that we can make New Jersey and affordable place for all income levels.

Also, I plan to establish a Task Force on Education Reform for the purpose of looking at the best delivery systems for public education with an objective of finding ways to make it more efficient and cost effective to taxpayers, and consequently, lower property taxes.[3]



See also: New Jersey General Assembly elections, 2013

Coleman ran in the 2013 election for New Jersey General Assembly District 15. Coleman is bracketed with Reed Gusciora. She was unopposed in the June 4 Democratic primary. She is challenged by Kim Taylor (R) and Anthony Giordano (R) in the general election which takes place on November 5, 2013.[4]


See also: New Jersey General Assembly elections, 2011

Coleman won re-election in 2011. Coleman and incumbent Reed Gusciora ran unopposed in the Democratic Primary on June 7. They then defeated Peter Yull and Kathy Kilcommons in the November 8 general election.[5]

New Jersey General Assembly District 15 General Election, 2011
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Democratic Green check mark transparent.pngReed Gusciora Incumbent 32.5% 20,350
     Democratic Green check mark transparent.pngBonnie Watson Coleman Incumbent 32.8% 20,505
     Republican Peter Yull 17.3% 10,817
     Republican Kathy Kilcommons 17.4% 10,914
Total Votes 62,586


Coleman successfully won re-election in the November 3, 2009 general election. Bracketed with Reed Gusciora, they defeated Republican challengers Kim Taylor and Werner Graf, as well as Libertarian challengers Daryl Mikell Brooks and Charles Green.[6][7]

New Jersey Assembly General Election, Fifteenth Legislative District (2009)
Candidates Votes
Green check mark transparent.png Bonnie Watson Coleman (D) 29,713
Green check mark transparent.png Reed Gusciora (D) 29,215
Kim Taylor (R) 15,418
Werner Graf (R) 14,781

Campaign donors


In 2011, Coleman received $500,706 in campaign donations. The top contributors are listed below.[8]

New Jersey General Assembly 2011 election - Campaign Contributions
Top contributors to Bonnie Watson Coleman's campaign in 2011
New Jersey Education Association$13,200
New Jersey State Laborers$8,200
1199 Seiu United Healthcare Workers East$8,200
Plumbers & Pipefitters Local 9$7,000
Total Raised in 2011 $500,706
Total Votes received in 2011 20,505
Cost of each vote received $24.42


Below are Coleman's top 5 campaign contributors in the 2009 election:[9]

Contributor 2009 total
Add Funds Transferred From Prior Campaign $268,020
New Jersey Regional Council Of Carpenters $16,400
New Jersey Association Of Realtors $16,400
New Jersey Education Association $14,200
New Jersey Business & Industry Association $10,700



Watson Coleman was endorsed by:

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