Institute on Ethnicity, Culture, and the Modern Experience

Nancy Zak

Nancy Zak

Nancy Zak is a Newark resident who has been doing community organizing in Newark for over 30 years. She has been involved with tenant issues since 1982, and helped found the ongoing Newark HUD Tenants' Coalition, working to preserve affordable housing. She helps to coordinate a city-wide coalition working to implement a new Master Plan for Newark, actively pushing for a role for residents in planning and development decisions. She has been active on environmental cleanup, neighborhood planning and quality of life issues in the Ironbound community. She published a tri-lingual neighborhood newspaper, Ironbound Voices, for many years. Her proudest accomplishment was coordinating a successful park preservation effort for Riverbank Park, a 100 year old Olmsted park which was threatened with demolition, through a community group called SPARK (Save the Park at Riverbank). Nancy is married to Newark native Arnold Cohen, and daughter Beth graduated in 2009 from Science Park High School.