Upendra J. Chivukula

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Upendra Chivukula
Chivukula Profile.jpg
New Jersey Board of Public Utilities Commissioner
Incumbent
Assumed office
September 30, 2014
Preceded by Jeanne Fox
Member of the New Jersey General Assembly
from the 17th Legislative District
In office
January 8, 2002 – September 30, 2014
Preceded by Bob Smith
Succeeded by Joseph Danielsen
Mayor of Franklin Township
In office
January 1, 2000 – December 31, 2000
Deputy Mayor of Franklin Township
In office
January 1, 1998 – December 31, 1998
Member of the Franklin Township Council from the 5th Ward
In office
January 1, 1998 – December 31, 2005
Preceded by Jack Shreve
Succeeded by James Vassanella
Personal details
Born (1950-10-08) October 8, 1950 (age 64)
Nellore, India
Political party Democratic
Spouse(s) Dayci
Residence Somerset neighborhood of Franklin Township, Somerset County, New Jersey
Alma mater B.E.E. Guindy Engineering College (Electrical Engineering)
M.E.E. City College of New York (Electrical Engineering)
Occupation Engineer
Religion Hinduism
Website Democracy for America Page [3]

Upendra Chivukula (born October 8, 1950) is a Democratic politician who currently serves as a Commissioner on the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities after serving more than 12 years in the New Jersey General Assembly, where he had been the Deputy Speaker.

On September 18, 2014, Chivukula was nominated by Governor Chris Christie to a seat on the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities, to replace retiring NJ BPU Commissioner Jeanne Fox.[1] The New Jersey Senate voted 35-1 to confirm Chivukula to a six-year term on the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities on September 22, 2014.

Chivukula is an advocate for raising the minimum wage, supporting social security and medicare, and investing in public education.[2][3] In 2014 he ran in the Democratic primary to fill retiring Congressman Rush Holt's seat in Congress, but he did not win the nomination.[4]

Chivukula served in the New Jersey General Assembly from 2002-2014, where he represented the 17th Legislative District. In 2001, Chivukula became the first Indian American elected to the New Jersey General Assembly and the fourth Indian-American in the United States to be elected to state office.[5]

Biography[edit]

Chivukula served as the New Jersey General Assembly's Deputy Speaker from 2007-2014. Chivukula was noted for being a strongly progressive legislator and, in coordination with Congressman Rush D. Holt, Jr., pushed through reforms to invest in clean energy, infrastructure projects and high-tech manufacturing jobs.[6]

Assemblyman Chivukula served on the Franklin Township Council from 1998-2005. He was first elected to represent the 5th Council Ward in 1997, and won re-election to his 5th Ward seat in 2001. He served as the township Deputy mayor in 1998 and as Mayor in 2000.[7]

In Franklin Township, he has also served on the Franklin Township Community Foundation, Finance Oversight Committee, Traffic Management Committee, Fire Prevention Board, Emergency Life Support Delivery, Integrated Communications Committee, Emergency Management, Franklin Township Planning Board, Economic Development Committee, Community / Senior Center Steering Committee and the Bicentennial Celebration Committee. Chivukula has served on the Somerset County Affordable Housing Board of Trustees and the Middlesex County Cultural and Historic Commission. He was appointed by then Governor of New Jersey James Florio to be a Public Member of the New Jersey State Board of Social Work Examiners, where he served from 1994 to 1997.

He was a Member of the Delegation to the Democratic National Convention in 1996, 2000, 2008, and 2012 and was an alternate delegate in 2004.[8][9]

Chivukula was one of New Jersey's presidential electors casting the state's Electoral College votes after the 2004 presidential election; New Jersey's electors cast their ballots on December 13, 2004 in the State House Annex in Trenton, where all 15 votes were cast for the Democratic Party candidate John Kerry.[10]

On November 6, 2012, he ran for Congress against Republican incumbent, U.S. Representative Leonard Lance to represent New Jersey's 7th congressional district in the United States House of Representatives. He was defeated in the heavily Republican district 57%-40% with a vote of 175,662 to 123,057.[11]

On June 3, 2014, he ran for Congress against NJ state Assemblywoman Bonnie Watson Coleman, NJ state Senator Linda R. Greenstein, and physicist Andrew Zwicker in the Democratic primary for New Jersey's 12th congressional district in the United States House of Representatives, to succeed retiring Congressman Rush D. Holt, Jr.. Chivukula came in third place in the primary with 21.8%, losing to Watson Coleman and Greenstein, who received 43% and 27.8% of the primary vote, respectively.

Chivukula received a B.E.E. from Guindy Engineering College (now part of Anna University) in Electrical Engineering and an M.E.E. degree from City College of New York in Electrical Engineering.[7] He was born in Nellore, India, and currently resides in Somerset.[12]

Election history[edit]

2014 U.S. House of Representatives 12th Congressional District Democratic Primary election [13]
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Bonnie Watson Coleman 15,603 43.04%
Democratic Linda R. Greenstein 10,089 27.83%
Democratic Upendra J. Chivukula 7,890 21.77%
Democratic Andrew Zwicker 2,668 7.36%
Democratic hold
New Jersey General Assembly elections, 2013[14]
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Joseph V. Egan (incumbent) 23,763 32.5%
Democratic Upendra J. Chivukula (incumbent) 23,331 31.9%
Republican Carlo DiLalla 13,762 18.8%
Republican Sanjay Patel 12,281 16.8%
Democratic hold
2012 U.S. House of Representatives 7th Congressional District election [15]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Leonard Lance (incumbent) 175,662 57.16%
Democratic Upendra J. Chivukula 123,057 40.04%
Independent Dennis A. Breen 4,518 1.47%
Libertarian Patrick McKnight 4,078 1.33%
Republican hold
New Jersey General Assembly elections, 2011[16]
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Joseph V. Egan (incumbent) 15,165 31.9%
Democratic Upendra J. Chivukula (incumbent) 14,862 31.3%
Republican Robert S. Mettler 8,876 18.7%
Republican Carlo A. DiLalla 8,627 18.2%
Democratic hold
New Jersey General Assembly elections, 2009[17]
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Joseph V. Egan (incumbent) 29,876 32.4%
Democratic Upendra J. Chivukula (incumbent) 28,030 30.4%
Republican Anthony Mazzola 18,023 19.5%
Republican Salim A. Nathoo 16,419 17.8%
Democratic hold
New Jersey General Assembly elections, 2007[18]
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Joseph V. Egan (incumbent) 16,456 31.2%
Democratic Upendra J. Chivukula (incumbent) 15,765 29.9%
Republican Matthew "Skip" House 10,324 19.6%
Republican Leonard Messineo 10,257 19.4%
Democratic hold
New Jersey General Assembly elections, 2005[19]
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Joseph V. Egan (incumbent) 29,601 34.0%
Democratic Upendra J. Chivukula (incumbent) 28,239 32.4%
Republican Catherine J. Barrier 15,748 18.1%
Republican Salim A. Nathoo 13,507 15.5%
Democratic hold
New Jersey General Assembly elections, 2003[20]
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Joseph V. Egan (incumbent) 16,143 28.8%
Democratic Upendra J. Chivukula (incumbent) 15,956 28.5%
Republican Catherine J. Barrier 10,988 19.6%
Republican Scott Johnkins 10,206 18.2%
Democratic hold
New Jersey General Assembly elections, 2001[21]
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Joseph V. Egan 27,948 33.9%
Democratic Upendra J. Chivukula 26,374 31.9%
Republican Catherine J. Barrier 14,161 17.2%
Republican Anthony Mazzola 14,085 17.1%
Democratic hold
Franklin Township Council 5th Ward election, 2001[22]
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Upendra J. Chivukula (incumbent) 1,332 64.6%
Republican Ormsby 731 35.4%
Democratic hold
Franklin Township Council 5th Ward election, 1997[23]
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Upendra J. Chivukula 1,403 60.1%
Republican Patricia K. Daniel 899 39.9%
Democratic hold

References[edit]

  1. ^ http://www.politickernj.com/81966/chivukula-bpu-appointment-im-ready
  2. ^ [1] "Democracy for America: Strong Progressive."
  3. ^ "Progressive Deputy Speaker for New Jersey."
  4. ^ "Chivukula most progressive candidate in 'Rush Holt' Primary Debate"
  5. ^ 2004 State Government Official Category, accessed April 21, 2007. "Upendra Chivukula is the first Asian Indian American elected to the New Jersey State Assembly and the fourth Indian American in the US to be elected to state office."
  6. ^ [2] "'Mr Energy' on Investing in NJ Job Powerhouses."
  7. ^ a b Assemblyman Chivukula's legislative web page, New Jersey Legislature. Accessed April 23, 2008.
  8. ^ Biography of Upendra J. Chivukula, accessed April 21, 2007.
  9. ^ Delegates to the 2004 Democratic National Convention , George Washington University. Accessed July 2, 2012.
  10. ^ 2004 Presidential Election: Electoral College Members, accessed January 7, 2007.
  11. ^ http://njelections.org/2012-results/2012-official-general-results-house-of-representatives-1212.pdf
  12. ^ Assembly Member Upendra J. Chivukula, Project Vote Smart. Accessed August 12, 2007.
  13. ^ Official List Candidate Returns for U.S. House of Representatives For June 2014 Primary Election, New Jersey Department of State, August 6, 2014. Accessed October 6, 2014.
  14. ^ Official List Candidate Returns for General Assembly For November 2013 General Election, New Jersey Department of State, December 4, 2013. Accessed December 4, 2013.
  15. ^ Official List Candidate Returns for U.S. House of Representatives For November 2012 General Election, New Jersey Department of State, December 12, 2012. Accessed December 12, 2012.
  16. ^ Official List Candidate Returns for General Assembly For November 2011 General Election, New Jersey Department of State, December 14, 2011. Accessed July 2, 2012.
  17. ^ Official List Candidate Returns for General Assembly For November 2009 General Election, New Jersey Department of State, December 1, 2009. Accessed July 2, 2012.
  18. ^ Official List Candidate Returns for General Assembly For November 2007 General Election, New Jersey Department of State, December 12, 2007. Accessed July 2, 2012.
  19. ^ Official List Candidate Returns for General Assembly For November 2005 General Election, New Jersey Department of State, December 16, 2005. Accessed July 2, 2012.
  20. ^ Official List Candidate Returns for General Assembly For November 2003 General Election, New Jersey Department of State, December 2, 2003. Accessed July 2, 2012.
  21. ^ Official List Candidate Returns for General Assembly For November 2001 General Election, New Jersey Department of State, April 17, 2008. Accessed July 2, 2012.
  22. ^ Official List Candidate Returns for Franklin Township Council (5th Ward), 2001 General Election, New Jersey Department of State, April 17, 2008. Accessed July 2, 2012.
  23. ^ Official List Candidate Returns for Franklin Township Council (5th Ward), 1997 General Election, New Jersey Department of State, April 17, 2008. Accessed July 2, 2012.

External links[edit]