Robert Littell (politician)

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This article describes Robert Littell the politician. For other persons named Robert Littell, please see Robert Littell (disambiguation).
Robert Littell
Member of the New Jersey Senate from the 24th Legislative District
In office
September 24, 1990 – January 8, 2008
Preceded by Wayne Dumont
Succeeded by Steve Oroho
Member of the New Jersey General Assembly from the 24th Legislative District
In office
January 12, 1982 – September 24, 1990
Preceded by Dean Gallo
Succeeded by Scott Garrett
Member of the New Jersey General Assembly from the 15th Legislative District
In office
January 9, 1968 – January 12, 1982
Preceded by District created
Succeeded by John S. Watson
Personal details
Born Robert Eugene Littell
(1936-01-09)January 9, 1936
Orange, New Jersey
Died November 14, 2014(2014-11-14) (aged 78)
Franklin, New Jersey
Political party Republican

Robert Eugene Littell (January 9, 1936 – November 14, 2014) was an American Republican Party politician, who served as a member of the New Jersey State Senate from 1992 to 2008. He represented the 15th Legislative District until 1982 and the 24th Legislative District thereafter. Before entering the Senate he served in the New Jersey General Assembly from 1968 to 1992 and the Franklin Borough Council from 1963 to 1965. He was a Delegate to the 1976 Republican National Convention.[1]

After nearly 40 years in the New Jersey Legislature — making him the longest-serving legislator in state history — Littell announced on March 6, 2007, that he would not seek reelection as senator and would retire from office at the end of 2007. Freeholder Steve Oroho and Assemblyman Guy R. Gregg both announced that they would pursue the Republican nomination for Littell's Senate seat in the June 2007 primary.[2] Oroho defeated Gregg in the primary and went on to win the seat in the general election.[3]


Littell was born in 1936 in Orange, New Jersey, the son of State Senator Alfred B. Littell and his wife, the former Dorothy A. Kershner. He attended Franklin High School and the Hun School of Princeton.[4][5] During the Korean War he served three years with the United States Marine Corps and received an honorable discharge in 1956.[6]

Senator Littell is part of the first father-daughter team to serve simultaneously in the New Jersey Legislature, together with his daughter, Assemblywoman Alison Littell McHose. His wife, Virginia Littell, has served as chairman of the New Jersey Republican State Committee.[7]

From 1992 to 2003, Senator Littell served as the Senate Budget and Appropriations Chair, and since 2004 he has served as the Senate Budget Officer. The Senator is a member of the Budget and Appropriations Committee, the Labor Committee, the Legislative Services Commission, and the Intergovernmental Relations Commission.[1]

Littell said he was guided by the principle expressed in the 1850s quotation, "There is no right way, to do the wrong thing."[8]

In 1996, the Senator was awarded an honorary Doctor of Laws Degree by Centenary College of New Jersey and in September of the same year, he was appointed to Centenary’s Board of Trustees. In 2001, Littell was awarded an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters from the New Jersey Institute of Technology. He died in Franklin, New Jersey on November 14, 2014. He was 78 years old.[9]


  1. ^ a b Senator Littell's Senate Website Archived 2007-10-10 at the Wayback Machine., New Jersey Legislature. Accessed July 6, 2007.
  2. ^ Wichert, Bill. Longest serving state legislator, Littell, to retire, New Jersey Herald, March 7, 2007.
  3. ^ Howell Jr., Tom; and Wichert, Bill. "Oroho Wins", New Jersey Herald, June 6, 2007. Accessed January 13, 2008.
  4. ^ Senator Robert E. Littell, New Jersey Legislature, backed up by the Internet Archive as of October 10, 2007. Accessed March 6, 2011.
  5. ^ 2001 Distinguished Service Award Recipients: Senator Robert E. Littell, New Jersey Department of Agriculture. Accessed March 6, 2011.
  6. ^ Manual of the Legislature of New Jersey. J.A. Fitzgerald. 1971. p. 407. 
  7. ^ Jackson, Herb. "Politics, a family business", The Record (Bergen County), February 3, 2003. Accessed July 6, 2007. "McHose should fit right in, having spent the past seven years working as an aide to the senator from the 24th District, Robert E. Littell, who is her father. Her mother, Virginia Newman Littell, is a former state Republican chairwoman, and her grandfather, Alfred B. Littell, was a senator in the Forties and Fifties. As far as anyone can tell, it's the first simultaneous father-daughter combination in the State House, but having relatives in the Legislature is not as unusual as you might expect."
  8. ^ Adubato, Steve. "Bob Littell: A Model Legislator". Stand & Deliver. Archived from the original on 2016-03-04. 
  9. ^ Robert Littell 40-year NJ lawmaker dies

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