CHATHAM, NJ -Tayfun Selen was selected as the interim replacement for a seat on the Chatham Township Committee at a special meeting held Tuesday night. He will be sworn in at the regular meeting of the Chatham Township Committee on Thursday.
Selen fills the seat vacated by John Maurer, who moved to North Carolina and resigned last month. Tayfun had been elected by the Chatham Township Republican Committee on Aug. 28 to be on the ballot as the Republican Candidate in November for Maurer's term, which will expire Dec. 31, 2019. Salil Sheth was picked by the Chatham Township Democratic Committee to oppose Selen on the Nov. 7 ballot.
Selen was one of three Republican candidates nominated for the interim seat on the Chatham Township Committee. The other nominees were Rez Estevez and Robert Nevin.
“I am honored and humbled to be selected as a Chatham Township Committeeman," Selen said. "This is a significant life event for me and my family. About 20 years after coming to America as an immigrant, hardly speaking English, today, I am able to lend a hand in leading our great town into the a future that will continue to be prosperous and bright.
“In my opinion, Chatham Township government under Republican leadership has done a phenomenal job. In the recent years, the Township Committee has controlled spending and kept our municipal taxes low while making the Township one of the premier family destinations in the State, if not in the entire Country. This does not happen by accident, but only through the continued efforts of our elected officials, dedicated municipal employees, and numerous volunteers.”
Selen formerly served on his local Board of Adjustment (Chatham Borough) and supports several local nonprofits. He also holds a seat on the Montclair State University School of Business Advisory Board and is a member of the Morris County Republican Committee.
“Let me also state that while I do not ascribe to identity politics, I am cognizant of the fact that, to my knowledge, I will be the first minority to serve on the Township Committee," Selen said. "That is not a tribute to me, but rather to the ideals of our great country and the opportunities that are available to everyone. I want to thank Mayor Ritter, the Township Committee, and our local Republican Party in showing that there are no barriers to entry for anyone seeking to serve our great town.
“In my new role as the Township Committee member, I will work hard every day to earn the respect of our residents. I will also be on the ballot in November and asking for your support to continue serving you through the rest of John Maurer's unexpired term."
Selen holds Bachelors of Science in Architecture from Istanbul Technical University and an MBA degree from Montclair State University. He achieved certification as a Six Sigma Black Belt by Rutgers University and Lockheed Martin and is a licensed real estate professional in New Jersey. He is also a LEED Accredited Professional certified by US Green Building Council and a Certified Public Accountant.
Selen has lived in the Chatham community for 15 years. He is married to Tulin and they have a daughter, Defne, who attends the Chatham public schools.