While serving in the New Jersey State Senate, this Democratic Party politician began his first term as Mayor of Newark. He held the office from 1986 until 2006.
After earning a bachelor's degree from Montclair State University, he attended the physical education master's program at Springfield College. He later served in the United States Army and taught and coached at Essex County College.
From 2008 until 2010, he served an eighteen-month prison sentence for fraud.
He was born in Jacksonville, Florida, and he later settled in New Jersey.
Cory Booker, James' successor as Mayor of Newark, went on to become a United States Senator from New Jersey.