Adofo-Wilson and Jaker Join Post Polak Team

September 5, 2019

Baye Adofo-Wilson and Michele Jaker have joined Post Polak, in our Roseland office, as Of Counsel.

Baye is a lawyer, consultant and real estate developer with expertise in arts and cultural districts, sustainability and mixed-income housing. He focuses his law practice on New Jersey Redevelopment Law and Opportunity Zones.

Baye has a real estate development and consulting firm, BAW Development LLC, which focuses on developing transformative, residential and mixed-use projects in urban communities. Currently, BAW Development, LLC is in partnership with RPM Development to preserve and rehabilitate Hinchliffe Stadium in Paterson, NJ, a historic Negro League baseball stadium. BAW Development is also designated developer of the West Lake Redevelopment Area in Neptune, NJ, and helping to revitalize Farish Street, the historic African American entertainment district, and Opportunity Zones in Jackson, MS.

Baye was formerly Deputy Mayor/Director of Economic and Housing Development (EHD) for Newark, NJ. While he was at EHD’s helm, Newark had an unprecedented $2+ billion of development, including annually 2,000 units of housing built, three million square feet of commercial development and three million square feet of industrial development. Baye managed the development of two significant parks in Newark: Mulberry Commons, a three-acre park in the city’s downtown, and three-mile-long Riverfront Park, along the Passaic River. As the Director of EHD, Baye managed the departments of housing, property management, real estate, economic development, planning, zoning and the office of sustainability.

Michele has over 20 years of experience in public policy and government affairs. In addition to her work with Post Polak, Michele is a partner with MBI, one of New Jersey’s largest public affairs firms. Michele has a strong background in health care, insurance, human services and women’s issues.

Previously, Michele served as Director of Government Affairs at Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield of New Jersey, representing the state’s largest health insurer before the New Jersey Legislature and various New Jersey departments and agencies. She has served as the Government Relations Director for Amerigroup in New Jersey (Anthem, Inc.) and was the chair of the Legislative Committee for the New Jersey Association of Health Plans.

Earlier in her career, Michele founded a public affairs, lobbying and communications firm and served as the Executive Director of both the Planned Parenthood Action Fund of New Jersey and the Family Planning Association of New Jersey. She has served as a public defender in municipal court. Michele got her start in New Jersey government as the Chief of Staff to Senator Joseph Vitale.

Michele serves on the Board of Directors for Garden State Equality and is a member of the Advisory Board of the New Leaders Council – New Jersey chapter.
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