Turkish American Appointed Officials


Huseyin Bayram

Turkish American businessman Huseyin Bayram was appointed as the Deputy Mayor of Paterson, NJ in December 2017. Bayram will serve along with Deputy Mayor Derya Taskin, a Turkish American businesswoman. Bayram has over 25 years of experience in the restaurant business and he is the owner of Toros Restaurant in Clifton. Bayram is originally from Giresun, Espiye.


Judge Halil Suleyman Ozerden

Judge Halil Suleyman Ozerden currently serves as a United States District Judge of the United States District Court for the Southern District of Mississippi. He was nominated to the position by President George W. Bush in 2006.

Judge Ozerden is a second generation Turkish American and son of a prominent medical doctor in Gulfport, MS. After graduating at the top of his class from Gulfport High School in 1985, he attended Georgetown University’s School of Foreign Service on a Navy ROTC scholarship. He graduated magna cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa from Georgetown University in 1989. He then served six years active duty as a commissioned officer and naval flight officer in the U.S. Navy, where he achieved the rank of lieutenant as an A-6E Intruder bombardier/navigator. He was awarded the Navy Commendation Medal for missions flown over Iraq during Operation Southern Watch and Somalia during Operation Restore Hope.

Returning from military duty, Judge Ozerden earned his law degree from Stanford Law School, where he served as associate editor for the Stanford Law Review. Following law school, he clerked for the Honorable Eldon Fallon, U.S. District Court Judge in New Orleans, before returning home to Gulfport to work at one of Gulf Coast’s most respected law firms.

Judge Ozerden has also been a dedicated community leader and volunteer which resulted in his selection as one of the Top Ten South Mississippi Business Leaders Under 40 (2004). His past and continuing community/civic activities include: Graduate of Leadership Gulf Coast, Mississippi Gulf Coast Chamber of Commerce (2003); Chair-Elect of the Gulfport Chamber of Commerce (2005); Executive Committee/Vice President of Public Affairs, Gulfport Chamber (2000-2003); Volunteer of the Year Award for 2003, Gulfport Chamber; Vice President of the Gulfport Business Club (2004-2005); Vestry Member, St. Peter’s By-the-Sea Episcopal Church (2002-2004); Member of the Rotary Club of Gulfport (since 1999); Paul Harris Fellow of the Rotary Club of Gulfport; Mentor, Gulfport Public Schools (since 1999); and Eagle Scout, Boy Scout Troop 209, Gulfport, Mississippi.


Derya Taskin

Derya Taskin became the twelfth Turkish American elected to public office. On Jue 25, 2019, Taskin was elected to the County Committee of Passaic County as a Democrat in New Jersey. Previously, she was appointed Deputy City Mayor of Paterson, and served for three years as a liaison between city hall and the Turkish American community. Paterson as the largest concentration of Turkish Americans in the United States. Taskin is the President of Derya Staffing and Consulting, and is also the President of the Paterson Turkish American Association.