Lakewood Hispanic Population Up to 16,000


mexicans-lakewoodThe Asbury Park Press reports: Juan Gonzalez is an honors student at Lakewood Middle School, a violinist who plans to study theology or architecture at Harvard University.

An impressive public speaker at age 13, Gonzalez addressed several hundred people at a Board of Education meeting about school concerns with gangs.

“I want to become a citizen and have the same rights as anyone to achieve my dream,” he said during an interview on the last day of the school year.

Gonzalez, who was born in Puebla, Mexico, is a member of group here reflecting a national trend: an emerging Hispanic populace which could wield considerable political and cultural influence in the relatively near future.

The 2010 Census revealed the Hispanic population here surged over the past decade, from 9,000 to 16,000 – a 78 percent increase. Lakewood’s population according to the 2010 Census was 92,843, edging Toms River as Ocean County’s largest municipality.

Nationally, Hispanics account for more than half of nation’s growth in past decade, according to the census results released in March. The Census Bureau predicts that the nation will be one quarter Hispanic by 2050.

Lakewood’s Hispanic residents are mostly Mexican, also a reflection of the nation’s demographic makeup, according to the Pew Research Center.

The majority of the children in Lakewood are educated in private Orthodox Jewish schools, but in the public school district the 5,500-student enrollment is predominantly Hispanic, said Puerto Rican-born Annette Maldonado, Lakewood Middle School principal.

The bulk of the membership of the Parent Teacher Organization is of Mexican descent and speaks only Spanish. The school board provided at one meeting a Spanish translator through whom parents spoke.

Many Hispanic students are children of immigrant parents who entered the country legally; entered legally but remained after their visas expired; or entered illegally. No matter the status of the parents, their children born in this country are U.S. citizens, noted Monica Guerrero, director of the Latino Community Connection, a for-profit business.

{Asbury Park Press/ Newscenter}


  1. a reminder from Hashem that lakewood is not your/our home it is just temporarily. ERETZ YISROEL IS OUR REAL HOME but we just don’t seem to miss it. Hashem is telling us when you can show me that you miss Eretz Yisroel & go there i will give you Mashiach & the bais hamikdosh but right now your all just not ready.