Kenneth Gibson, the first black mayor of Newark, New Jersey, died March 29 in a rehabilitation center from an undisclosed illness. He was 89.
Voters elected Gibson, a structural engineer, mayor in 1970, defeating incumbent Mayor Hugh Addonizio, who resorted to scare tactics to frighten white into not voting to elect Gibson. Addonizio was on trial for corruption toward the end of the campaign. He eventually was convicted.
Gibson served as mayor from 1970 to 1986. He was the first black man elected mayor of a major city in the Northeast.