JERSEY CITY, NJ - Five candidates are running in the special election to serve out the remainder of former Ward D Councilman Michael Yun’s term. Yun died from COVID-19 earlier this year. Election Day is Tuesday, November 3.
Rafael Torres, Patrick Ambrossi, Cynthia Hadjiyannis, and Lenny Lambert will be challenging current Councilman Yousef Saleh, who was appointed by the City Council to Yun’s seat in May.
The winning candidate will serve in the position until Dec. 31, 2021.
Submitting more than 1,000 petition signatures to secure his place on the ballot, twice the number needed, Saleh, who received the support of Mayor Steven Fulop and Council President Joyce Watterman when appointed to the seat, formerly ran for the Board of Education and is a lifelong resident of the Jersey City Heights area. A senior compliance and regulation officer at JP Morgan Chase, Saleh, 31, is Jersey City’s first Muslim councilman.
A retired firefighter, Rafael Torres, ran against Yun in the 2017 election. A 27-year veteran of the Jersey City Fire Department, and a resident of the Heights for 35 years, Torres was a regular volunteer with Yun and has also worked in guest engagement at the Liberty Science Center.
Patrick Ambrossi, 26, a lifelong Heights resident, also put his name forward for the open seat in May. He is the founder and president of the Leonard Gordon Park Conservancy and helped with the creation of the master plan for redevelopment of the park. He has also worked in a number of other civic organizations, some of which also involved Yun.
A board member of the Hudson County Young Democrats, Amrbosini has also worked as a fiscal analyst for the Hudson County Division of Housing and Community Development.
President of the Jersey City Reservoir Preservation Alliance, Cynthia Hadjiyannis, 51, is a veteran of Yun’s 2013 campaign. An attorney for more than 20 years, including working on municipal issues in Union CIty, Hadjiyannis also sought to get named to Yun’s seat last May.
A political newcomer, Leonard W. Lambert, is seeking the position under the banner “All Lives Matter.”
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