An Act designating the State Highway Route No. 72 bridge over Manahawkin Bay as the
"Dorland J. Henderson Memorial Bridge," and making an appropriation.
Whereas, Mr. Dorland J. "Don" Henderson was born at the beginning of the twentieth century and had to overcome discrimination in the early part of the century to become one of the top engineers at the New Jersey Department of Transportation; and
Whereas, Mr. Henderson, as Chief of the Department of Transportation's Electrical Bureau and the Division of Traffic Engineering, had many outstanding personal and professional achievements; and
Whereas, Mr. Henderson's professional achievements included designing the innovative and now historically-classic lighting system for the State Highway Route No. 72 bridge, built in 1958, which is made of 768 separate light fixtures inserted in the hand railing and creates a night time "string of pearls" visual effect over Manahawkin Bay; and
Whereas, By his own account, Mr. Henderson experienced in his life many forms of "discrimination, segregation and job denials"; and
Whereas, Mr. Henderson took it upon himself to ensure that all persons who worked for him worked in an environment free of racial distinctions; and
Whereas, As Chief Engineer of the Department of Transportation's Electrical Bureau and the Division of Traffic Engineering, Mr. Henderson began a policy of removing references to race, creed, color or national origin from all personnel forms and records so as to create, "A wholesome atmosphere in the Division, a feeling that we are all Americans with no adjectives or hyphenation"; and
Whereas, Mr. Henderson, who lived in Newark, died in 1996 at the age of 96; and
Whereas, In honor of Mr. Henderson's service to this State and his personal and
professional achievements, it is appropriate to designate the Route 72 bridge in his honor;
Be It Enacted by the Senate and General Assembly of the State of New Jersey:
1. The Commissioner of Transportation is directed to designate the State Highway Route No.
72 bridge over Manahawkin Bay in Stafford Township, Ocean County, as the "Dorland J.
Henderson Memorial Bridge."
2. There is appropriated from the General Fund, for purposes of implementing section 1 of
this act, $2,500 to the Department of Transportation for the costs of appropriate signs bearing
the designation of the "Dorland J. Henderson Memorial Bridge."
3. This act shall take effect immediately.
Approved November 2, 2000.