The Tyner Family And Their Contributions To Atlantic City
Atlantic City, NJ plays a deep, interesting, rich role in our country’s history. From the Boardwalk and beaches, to the Miss America Pageant, to casino gaming, it is a resort town known for relaxation and entertainment and also for its resilience. The complete history of the city cannot be told without including the Tyner family and the contributions they have made to the Greater Atlantic City area for the past century.
Henry “Hank” Tyner returned to his hometown from World War II in 1946. In 1950, he joined the Atlantic City Fire Department as a firefighter. In 1958, he transferred to the Atlantic City Police Department where he would serve until his retirement in 1988. Hank was the recipient of the State of New Jersey PBA Rookie of the Year Award in 1958 for his role in solving a string of burglaries throughout the City. He would rise through the ranks of the ACPD until he reached the rank of Inspector, which is now known as Deputy Chief. Hank was revered throughout the police department as a “Cop’s Cop” and throughout the entire community as someone who cared deeply about all of its residents. As a founding member of the National Organization of Black Law Enforcement Executives (NOBLE), he established meaningful connections in law enforcement throughout the entire country.
Hank’s brother Sgt. Bob Tyner was legendary in his own right. He headed up the first juvenile unit and was committed to changing the direction of the lives of many youthful offenders.
In 1981, Hank took a leave of absence from the police department to run for City Council under a re-organized form of municipal government. He was the leading vote getter and became Atlantic City’s first President of City Council. Hank led the Council through turbulent times as casino gaming was establishing its foothold in the City. Today, the City Council chambers are named in his honor out of respect for his service.
After his retirement from ACPD, Hank would return to City government in 1990 as the Director of Mercantile and Licensing, reforming an office that had been plagued by corruption. Hank left a legacy as a “builder of bridges” between all people throughout the greater Atlantic City community.
This legacy has been proudly continued by his son Damon G. Tyner, Esq. who has served the public as a state Administrative Law Judge (2021-14), a Judge of the Superior Court of New Jersey (2014-17), and the 29th Atlantic County Prosecutor (2017-21).
The Tyner name is synonymous with serving all, with dignity, in the Greater Atlantic City area, and it is on this foundation that The Law Offices of Damon G. Tyner, LLC will work to zealously represent its clients with honor, pride, and integrity.
June 22, 1971 Sgt. Hank Tyner with President Nixon in front of the Chalfonte-Haddon Hall, now Resorts Hotel-Casino, after President Nixon addressed the 120th Annual Convention of the American Medical Association and then greeted a group of patients from the Children’s Seashore House.
April 2011 with my mom, Beatrice Graham Tyner and son, Atlantic City Police Department Detective Michael Graham, at a brunch for the 200 Club of Atlantic and Cape May County, honoring police, fire and EMS members killed in the line of duty. My mother’s first husband, Clayton Graham was the first police officer shot and killed in the line of duty in Atlantic City. The Clayton G. Graham Public Safety Building in Atlantic City is named in his honor. My brother Michael followed in the footsteps of both his father and step-father serving as an Atlantic City Police Officer for 25 years.
Henry “Hank” Tyner in 1986
A picture of the first City Council in 1982 in the Council Chambers that have been re-named in honor of Henry “Hank” Tyner. (seated l-r) Council Members John Mooney, Pres. Hank Tyner, John Whittington, Walter Collette, (standing l-r) Council Members Jim Sykes, Arnold Orsatti, Jim Whelan, Gene Dorn, Harold Mosee
Photo of the re-named City Council Chambers in Atlantic City.
Damon G. Tyner (age 11) with Henry “Hank” Tyner in the Spring of 1981.