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Home Political Spotlight Turkish American Political Activists
Turkish American Political Activists



Fatima (Fatos) Argun serves as an elected member of the Steering Committee of the Arlington County Democratic Committee. As an Outreach/Visibility Chair, she works with community stakeholders to enhance democratic participation and build long term meaningful relationships to increase engagement and include diverse voices in the political process. She was a delegate to the Virginia State convention and ran as a delegate to the 2016 Democratic National Convention representing Hillary Clinton and Tim Kaine.




Turkish American attorney Yelda Bartlett was appointed as an alternate member to the Democratic Central Committee of Alameda County, California. Her husband, Ben Bartlett, was elected to serve in Berkeley City Council District 3 in the 2016 general elections. Ms. Bartlett previously served as a Commissioner for the Community Environmental Advisory Commission and the Commission on the Status of Women (COSOW) for the City of Berkeley where she was elected chairwoman of the Commission.




Leah Ersoylu was recently elected to the Costa Mesa Board of Parks and Recreation. Ms. Ersoylu and her Turkish American husband, Sarp, run a consulting firm, which helps support the sustainability of community-based programs in Turkey and the United States.




Turkish American attorney Gunay Evinch serves on Maryland Governor Lawrence Hogan's Commission on Middle Eastern Communities and Commission on WWI. In 2016, Evinch became the Co-Chairman of the Turkish American National Steering Committee (TASC), which oversees the programs of America's leading Turkish American organizations and mosques. He has also represented the Turkish American community on the Heritage Council of the U.S. Office of the Director of National Intelligence since 2007.




Turkish American businessman and CEO of Nimeks Organic and Natural Food Source, Inc. Murat Guzel served as Chairman of the Democratic National Committee's Heritage Council. He also served as an officer with the National Democratic Ethnic Coordinating Council and as a delegate to the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia in 2016.




In 2016, Duysevi Karan Miyar was elected as Executive Committee Woman of the Democratic Party in Precinct 303 of Miami, Florida. She was previously a 2016 Democratic candidate for District 111 of the Florida House of Representatives and a candidate for the District 4 seat of the Miami-Dade County School Board in Florida. She currently serves as an educator in the Miami-Dade County Public School system.




Turkish American Ersal Ozdemir is the President and CEO of Keystone Construction and Keystone Realty group in Indianapolis, IN. He is the former Finance Chairman of the Indiana State Republican Party and the Founder and Chairman of Indianapolis’ professional soccer team, the Indy Eleven. Ozdemir also serves on the Board of Directors of both the Indiana Chamber of Commerce and the Executive Committee of the Indy Chamber.



Turkish American entrepreneur and women's rights activist Ceylan Rowe is a Commissioner at the Metro West Commission of the Status of Women in Massachusetts. The Commission advocates for the rights of women across Massachusetts. Rowe's company Trendy Napkin, which sells non-sweatshop shirts, has carried out social and entrepreneurial campaigns for Syrian refugee women and helps refugee women become self-sufficient through donations.



Turkish American Tayfun Selen of Chatham, New Jersey currently serves as Chairman of the Chatham Township Republican Committee. He previously ran for New Jersey State Assembly in 2013 and 2015. Selen is an architect, accountant, and businessman who believes strongly in community engagement. In addition to supporting several local charities, he serves on the Advisory Board for Montclair State University’s School of Business and previously held a seat on his local Board of Adjustment. Selen holds a Bachelors of Science degree in Architecture from Istanbul Technical University and an MBA from Montclair State University in New Jersey.



Turkish American businesswoman Mehtap Sendur owns a logistics company in St. Michaels, MD. She serves as Chairwoman of Maryland Governor Lawrence Hogan's Commission on Middle Eastern Communities. The Commission hosts events throughout the year to raise cultural awareness and ensures Governor Hogan is in touch with Maryland's Middle Eastern community.




Turkish American businesswoman Derya Taskin serves as Deputy Mayor of Paterson, New Jersey. She also runs her own consulting company and aids small businesses interested in selling their products within the Turkish market and aids Turkish companies looking to invest in the U.S. Ms. Taskin also serves as Commissioner of the Library and Museum Board for Paterson and was previously President of the Paterson Turkish American Society association.