Middlesex County Freeholder Shanti Narra chairs the County’s Public Safety and Health Committee. Freeholder Narra was appointed to the Board of Chosen Freeholders on Oct. 20, 2016, elected for a partial term in November 2017, and subsequently won election to her first full term on the Freeholder Board in November 2018. Since she joined the Board, she has maintained a strong commitment to provide the residents of Middlesex County with programs and resources that will ensure their safety and address their health and wellness needs.
Freeholder Narra is a longtime North Brunswick resident. She is a graduate of Georgetown University and Georgetown University Law Center. Currently, she is a practicing attorney with the Legal Aid Society of New York, where she is a supervisor in the Criminal Defense Division.
Freeholder Narra began her career in public service in 2007 as a Democratic Committeewoman. She then served on the North Brunswick Township Planning Board, where she was actively involved in the development for the North Brunswick Transit Village, a project she would later vote in favor of when she sat on the Township Council. She believes strongly that this project is an example of smart growth that strengthens the Township’s life, accessibility and economy.
She was first elected to Township Council in 2009 and re-elected in 2012 and 2015. Freeholder Narra also served on the Council on Affordable Housing and was Liaison to the Public Library. When she served as Liaison to the Open Space Committee, she helped create the Township’s Community Garden on the former Pulda Farm, purchased as Open Space in 2010.
Freeholder Narra is an active member of the North Brunswick Township Community Emergency Response Team (CERT). She is trained in Search and Rescue, Fire Safety, Disaster Medical Operations and received specific instruction from the Red Cross in Shelter Operations. She participated in running shelter operations in North Brunswick during Super Storm Sandy and during the 2015 Warehouse Fire.
Some of her most notable accomplishments as a Freeholder include:
• Joining the Department of Public Safety and Health with the Department of Infrastructure Management, under Freeholder Kenny, to launch the County CRS (Community Rating Service) program, in order to help municipalities develop floodplain plans and apply for FEMA’s Community Rating System Program, which could lead to lower flood insurance premiums for our residents and businesses should such events occur.
• Middlesex County’s public health initiatives, under her leadership, were praised by the New Jersey Department of Health in 2018. State Health Commissioner Dr. Shereef Elnahal endorsed the County’s accomplishments in addressing the opioid epidemic, its work in public health practices like lead screenings and for its successful working relationship with the NJDOH. The Department of Public Safety and Health is currently working to inform the public on the links between mental illness and substance abuse.