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New Jersey Gov. Richard J. Codey recently appointed Ray Burke ’75 to the New Jersey Schools Construction Corp. board of directors. Earlier this year, he joined the board of directors of the Center for Policy Research of New Jersey, a nonpartisan think-tank that evaluates public policy.

His first appointment by Corzine was a directorship on the state’s Economic Development Authority, which seeks to help finance businesses and non-profit agencies, create jobs, and revitalize properties. Burke is president and owner of Burke Motor Group in Cape May Court House.

“My appointment, I think, was really an effort on the part of the governor to see that my area was represented,” he says. “There are many areas in south Jersey that have the opportunity for redevelopment.”

Coming from a family rich with Lafayette graduates, including his wife Ellen Kravet Burke ’76, brother David Burke ’79, and sister-in-law Francey Kanengiser Burke ’80, he is thankful for his college education.

“My interest in government began at Lafayette,” says Burke, a government and law graduate. “Paul Pfretzschner [former professor and head of government and law] had a big influence on me because he used to say that everyone needs to get involved in government and the democratic process. I said to my wife when I got the appointment, ‘I can almost feel Paul Pfretzschner smiling down on me.’”

“I find this position very interesting and a good way to pay him back and Lafayette back for the education they gave me.”

Burke is president of CARPAC, a state political action committee franchised by automobile dealers, director of General Motors Dealer Marketing Association, an executive committee member of New Jersey Committee of Automotive Retailers, and a board of directors member for Center for Policy Research of New Jersey. He is a trustee, finance committee chairman, personnel committee treasurer, and executive committee member of Wetlands Institute. He serves on the board of directors and is personnel committee chairman, audit committee member, and executive committee member of Sturdy Savings Bank. He won Time magazine’s Quality Dealer Award for New Jersey in 1996.

Categorized in: Alumni Profiles