Charlie Kratovil is a 2009 Rutgers University graduate with a degree in journalism and media studies. For the past 18 years, he has lived in New Brunswick, where he has advocated for progressive policies and community empowerment.
In college, he helped to host Model United Nations and Model Congress conferences for high school students. He went on to work for several non-profit organizations, served on the Board of Directors of the Rutgers University Student & Alumni Federal Credit Union, and started successful news outlets in New Brunswick (NewBrunswickToday.com) and Paterson (PatersonPress.com).
Charlie is currently the Editor of New Brunswick Today, a position he has held since 2011, as well as a community organizer, and the only independent candidate for Mayor of New Brunswick.
In 2016, Charlie was honored to be the keynote speaker at the 40th anniversary of his alma mater, the Rutgers School of Communication & Information. In 2018, Charlie was named as a “Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Champion For Justice” at the New Jersey State Governor’s Jefferson Awards for Public Service. The Jefferson Award is considered America’s highest honor for public service and volunteerism.
Charlie started New Brunswick Today, the only free bilingual media outlet in New Brunswick
- Wrote over 1,200 news articles about our community and the issues facing it, and trained over 100 journalists, including several who have gone on to jobs with major media outlets
- Won several awards from the NJ Press Association and the NJ Society of Professional Journalists, including the prestigious Stuart and Beverly Awbrey Award For Community-Oriented Journalism
- Produced and hosted hundreds of video news segments, including breaking news coverage, government meetings, and live interviews with elected officials like Congressman Frank Pallone
- Won several Open Public Records Act lawsuits, forcing the city government to reveal police jurisdiction maps, legal bills, police videos, and financial statements from developers
Charlie fought to give power to the people of New Brunswick and other New Jersey cities
- Defeated the New Brunswick Mayor’s political machine in a 2012 referendum, giving people the power to pick their school board members for the first time in history
- Organized and taught free empowerment trainings and forums on civics, politics, government, and journalism in Paterson, Newark, Trenton, Passaic, Perth Amboy, and New Brunswick
- Led successful campaign that prevented the sale of Trenton’s water system in 2010
- Managed successful campaigns for 25 grassroots candidates that were elected to the New Brunswick Democratic Organization (also known as the “County Committe”) in 2009
Charlie exposed public corruption and ethics violations here in New Brunswick
- Exposed a federal investigation into a criminal cover-up of problems with the city’s drinking water and the Mayor’s secret plan to privatize city water system
- Obtained evidence of another New Brunswick Water Utility scandal that cost the city government about $500,000 and saw two longtime officials plead guilty to official misconduct
- Caught the New Brunswick Housing Authority illegally overcharging their public housing tenants with bogus parking violations, resulting in thousands of dollars being refunded to the tenants
- Filed successful ethics complaints against a City Councilman and the New Brunswick Parking Authority’s attorney, proving they violated the ethics law and leading to them both being fined
Charlie supported good policies to help improve the quality of life in New Brunswick
- Exposed shortfalls in the system used to alert the Rutgers community about crimes in our neighborhoods, leading to an expanded crime reporting system for off-campus areas
- Successfully pressured the city government to end a costly and controversial water privatization deal
- Advocated for increased compensation for the city’s hard-working crossing guards, a Municipal ID program, paid sick leave for all workers, and New Brunswick’s anti-wage-theft law
- Testified before the State Assembly in support of the NJ DREAM Act, which allows undocumented NJ high school students to be eligible for “in-state” tuition rates at Rutgers and other public universities