The Green Party of New Jersey strives to run candidates at all levels of government in our state. Listed in this section is our lineup of state, county, and local candidates for the 2017 statewide election.
Seth Kaper-Dale for Governor
Seth Kaper-Dale has been pastor of the Reformed Church of Highland Park (RCHP), with his wife Stephanie, for 15 years. He and Stephanie graduated from Princeton Theological Seminary in 2001 and immediately assumed the office of co-pastors. Since then, Seth has led RHCP to deeply engage in issues of community development and political action. Seth has spearheaded interfaith efforts to end solitary confinement, aid refugees and asylees in their resettlement efforts, shelter the homeless, connect residents to affordable housing, and provide services for mental health consumers. As a candidate for Governor of New Jersey, Seth’s “The Last Are First” platform highlights this lifelong effort to ensure that those who have been overlooked and marginalized are rightly returned to the forefront of our collective political consciousness.
Seth joined congregants in creating Who Is My Neighbor Inc., which brought Highland Park a fair trade store, an after school program, and an affordable summer camp. Who Is My Neighbor Inc. has continued to grow and expand its programs for social change, widening the efforts to reach seniors and infants/caregivers.
Seth created RCHP-Affordable Housing Corp. in 2006. In the past 10 years RCHP-AHC has created housing for women aging out of foster care, homeless Veterans, re-entering citizens, justice-involved youth, chronically homeless mentally ill adults, refugees and asylees. In total RCHP-AHC owns or operates 17 buildings that house 91 tenants in supportive housing.
Since 2002 Seth has fought to keep families together who are facing the deportation of a parent. This has resulted in crafting legislation and finding sponsors to bring that legislation before the U.S. House of Representatives and the Senate as well as state resolutions of support.
Seth is vice-chair of the National Religious Campaign Against Torture, and through that venue has supported efforts to end Solitary Confinement in NJ jails and prisons. Seth helped raise initial funding and support for Neighborcorps Reentry Services in Middlesex County; he is on the board of Churches Accomplishing Long Term Recovery and he helped start Church-Based Mental Health Services.
Seth believes firmly in the value of grassroots movement-based outreach to advance the causes of social, economic, and environmental justice. By doing so, we can restore the vitality and prosperity of the State of New Jersey through a wellspring that rises, from the bottom up, to the benefit of the greater collective good.
TWITTER: @KaperDaleForGov & @SKD4GOV
CLICK HERE to Donate to Seth’s Campaign
Troy Knight-Napper for State Senate LD-28
Troy Knight-Napper is a 31 year old father of two wonderful boys. A Bloomfield resident born in Newark, New Jersey and raised in East Orange, he has lived through the many trials that the middle class has endured. His main concern is paving the way to a better future for his children, as well as his fellow neighbors. His passion for breaking barriers makes him a progressive thinker.
Troy feels that marginalized communities deserve better than the status quo. Families living on the current minimum wage without assistance are unable to achieve the “American Dream” and their pursuit of happiness. The outdated war on drugs has unjustly incarcerated minorities for non-violent charges. The police have now become a militarized operation. The lack of police accountability within the police force has become troubling.
Troy believes the current policies held in New Jersey wrongly favor fossil fuels instead of renewable energy. Fossil fuels are not only harmful to the environment but also hurt the efficiency of our infrastructure, causing the loss of countless job opportunities. He will push legislation to advance renewable energy in New Jersey, making it a true pioneer and becoming an example for other states to emulate.
Once in office, he will continue to fight for the equal rights of the LGBTQ community. He will stand for the equality of women’s rights within the workforce and women’s healthcare. Troy will advance the battle to improve marginalized communities and stop policies that lead to gentrification patterns that destroy neighborhoods and leave so many loyal hard-working residents behind. He is committed to being both a leader and a listener, so that the best interests of his constituents will get the voice they deserve in the state legislature.
CLICK HERE to Donate to Troy’s Campaign
Mico Lucide for General Assembly LD-2
Throughout his adult life, he has been a civic engagement advocate, an LGBTQ+ rights activist, and more recently, has been involved in various other human rights efforts through the Green Party. Passionately progressive, Mico was a co-coordinator and volunteer for Atlantic County for Bernie, the local chapter of Bernie Sanders’s campaign for the Democratic nomination in 2016. He joined the Green Party toward the end of 2016, and has taken part in various demonstrations and efforts supporting the people of Atlantic County.
Mico’s platform focuses on reducing government waste, both economic and environmental, and putting the livelihood of all people as a priority in New Jersey’s government. A living wage, health care for all, and reforming New Jersey’s spending and taxation to reduce the burden on typical taxpayers are at the forefront of his campaign.
“I feel like the government needs someone who comes from a background focused on fighting for people,” says Mico, “Someone focused on showing up at the rallies and marching with the picketers, someone focused on educating the people about their rights and how they can exercise those rights, someone focused on bringing the needs of the people to Trenton and not giving up until those needs are met. We don’t need more business people, we don’t need more lawyers. We need an Activist in the Assembly.”
Mico grew up in Egg Harbor Township, attended Stockton University for his Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science, concentrating in pre-law studies, and currently lives in Mays Landing.
CLICK HERE to Donate to Mico’s Campaign
Sean Stratton for General Assembly LD-18
Stratton grew up in East Brunswick NJ, and has lived in Middlesex County his entire life. He attended Rutgers University where he graduated with a degree in Environmental Science in 2015. He currently works as an Environmental Consultant in New Jersey. A member of the American Industrial Hygienist Association, Stratton places an emphasis on safety not just in the workplace but also at home.
A staunch proponent for environmental protection and how it directly effects the health of local residents Stratton’s most recent advocacy for the residents of his district has been investigating lead concentrations in drinking water due to aging infrastructure and widespread use of lead in plumbing, even in newer homes. Stratton is an advocate for clean water for all and will continue to fight to ensure that our water is suitable to drink.
Stratton’s platform consists of four main points. Environmental Protection, rebuilding our failing infrastructure, expanding Medicare to all, and increasing the minimum wage to $15/hr.
Kenny Collins for General Assembly LD-24
A decorated US Army veteran and passionate environmentalist, Kenny has been a champion for protecting our food and water. He has initiated, organized and participated in numerous campaigns to protect the Delaware River Basin and our drinking water.
Endorsed by the NJ Sierra Club as a candidate for state assembly in 2015, Kenny’s constant engagement on behalf of our local environment and ecosystem spans over 10 years with the Delaware River Basin Commission and New Jersey Highlands Commission
Aaron Hyndman for General Assembly LD-24
A Public Relations & Communications Consultant by profession and an activist and advocate for environmental, economic, and social justice by passion, Aaron’s recent political involvement includes a successful stint as the Sussex-Warren Regional Co-Coordinator for the Bernie Sanders campaign, where he spearheaded the Newton-based efforts that swung Sussex and Warren counties for Sanders against the tide of a decisive Hillary Clinton victory in the New Jersey primary. Aaron also served as Warren County Field Director for the Peter Jacob for Congress campaign in New Jersey’s 7th Congressional District.
Aaron did his undergraduate work at Princeton University and Rutgers University-New Brunswick, where he graduated summa cum laude. An alumnus of Rutgers University’s School of Communication & Information, he majored in communication, with areas of concentration in public policy, media studies, public relations, and critical theory.
In the community, Aaron does advocacy work through his positions with the Warren County Mental Health Advisory Board, New Jersey Bike & Walk Coalition, and NAMI-NJ, among others. He’s also been involved in actions with 15 Now NJ, Coalition Against the Pilgrim Pipeline, North Jersey Indivisible, and many more. And perhaps most importantly, Aaron had the honor and privilege of mentoring and training young people across the area for over 12 years as a youth soccer coach and trainer
Melissa Tomlinson for Atlantic County Freeholder At Large
Melissa Tomlinson, an educator with 15 years experience, is currently a special education teacher in Buena. The mother of 2 young men, she has lived in Atlantic County for 24 years. Melissa has decided to enter the political arena after devoting all of her spare time to running a grassroots public education advocacy organization for 4 years. As a public education advocate, she recognizes the need to develop strong relationships within a community, to create spaces for those whose voice has been minimized, and the importance of placing the children, as the guardians of our future, first. To do this, she has built relationships in her work with national, state, and local organizations such as Network for Public Education, the Journey for Justice Alliance, Black Lives Matter AC, SURJ NJ, and South Jersey Women for Progressive Change.
Barry Bendar for Ocean County Freeholder At Large
An Information Technology Professional for 38 years, Barry currently is a Database Administrator for a large Health Care company working within New Jersey. Born in Passaic and raised in Monmouth County, Barry, his Wife and two Children (Twins) have been residents of Ocean County for 29 years. Having been active in Ocean County politics since 2003, he has seen firsthand that the relationship between the two major parties in New Jersey is not healthy for the average resident, and plans on making that abundantly clear as part of his campaign to be elected to the Ocean County Board of Chosen Freeholders. Having been an activist for the environment for years, Barry feels that this “unhealthy alliance” between the parties will end up destroying all those things that make Ocean County and New Jersey unique, all for the sake of short term monetary gain. He firmly believes that both his own county and the state need to turn their attention to “Green” manufacturing, which will help save what’s left of our environment while creating sustainable jobs. Political corruption is a pet peeve of his and when elected, he will work tirelessly to bring the rampant amount ongoing in Ocean County to light.
Jessica Clayton for Brick Township Board of Education
Jessica is a NJ certified teacher in both Preschool through 3rd grade and K-5. She graduated from Rutgers University & did graduate work at Montclair State University. She taught as a certified teacher in bilingual public preschool programs in both New Brunswick and Trenton for 6 years before opening up her state licensed home daycare here in Brick. She has worked with young children for over 15 years in various settings including as an assistant in a classroom for students with special needs, a camp counselor, a nanny, a para-professional, & a substitute. She is a founding member of a new non-profit, the Easter Region Associate of Forest and Nature Schools (ERAFANS) and am currently helping to organize an Outdoor Learning Retreat right here in Hopewell NJ. She has led professional development sessions teaching other educators about the value of outdoor play in nature.