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Theodore O. Best Jr.  
Board of Chosen Freeholders
Title: Freeholder
Phone: 973-225-5427

Theodore O. Best Jr.Theodore O. Best Jr. (D) term 1-1-15 to 12-31-17

Freeholder Theodore O. Best, Jr. was elected on November 8, 2011, becoming the youngest Freeholder ever in Passaic County and the State of New Jersey. Born and raised in Paterson, Freeholder Best learned firsthand how governmental policies impact everyday life. A lack of funding for recreation and after school programs motivated Freeholder Best to get involved in student government at East Side High School and the city’s NAACP youth division where he became President of both organizations. Freeholder Best’s civic engagement followed him to Rutgers University where he served as Convener of the Dean’s Diversity Advocacy Board, Chairperson of the President’s Student Advisory Board, and headed the RU Voting Campaign.

Building on his background in public policy, Freeholder Best moved to Washington, D.C.and served as a staffer for Congressman Bill Pascrell, Jr. where he worked on legislation that led to the nation’s newest national park at the Paterson Great Falls.

Freeholder Best returned to Paterson in 2008, purchased a home on the same street where he grew up, and ran for the Paterson Board of Education to “help make a difference in the lives of our young people.” He became the youngest Commissioner and then President ever elected to the Board. In addition to serving as a Commissioner on the state’s third largest school district with 31,000 students and a $520+ million budget, Freeholder Best demonstrated his commitment to young people by taking a job with NJCDC as Program Director of The Great Falls Youth Development Center and Advisor for The Paterson Youth Council.

Freeholder Best currently serves on the Public Works Committee as the Chairman. He is also a member of the Planning and Economic Development Committee, as well as, the Human Services Committee. A true community servant, Freeholder Best has been an active board member of Paterson Habitat for Humanity, Paterson Team HOPE, Paterson NAACP, Paterson Rotary P.M. Club, Alpha Phi Alpha, Fraternity, Inc., Passaic County Board of Social Services, Passaic County Board of School Estimates for PCCC, Passaic County Youth Services Commission, and the Passaic County Democratic Committee.

Freeholder Best is happily married to wife Kyona, a teacher at Passaic County Tech, and is a father to a beautiful daughter, Riley Marie Best.  

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