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HomeNewsHaddam Town NewsMelissa Schlag, Former First Selectman of Haddam, Dies at 46

Melissa Schlag, Former First Selectman of Haddam, Dies at 46

Editorial Staff.

Melissa Schlag, former First Selectman of Haddam, passed away on Friday, October 2, 2020, at the age of 46, after a lengthy battle with cancer.

Back in 2011, Ms. Schlag gained the public’s attention with her vocal opposition to the “Land Swap” in Haddam (17 acres of state land overlooking the river). On that wave, she ran for State Senator on the Green Party ticket in 2012, but lost.

Ms. Schlag ran for First Selectman of Haddam in 2013, and served from November 2013 to November 2015. She also served as a Selectman from November 2017 to November 2019. Ms. Schlag received national attention when she started kneeling during recitation of the Pledge of Allegiance at Board of Selectmen meetings in July of 2018.

When she was running for Board of Finance in 2019, she had this to say, “I was honored to serve on the Municipal Opportunities Regional Efficiencies Commission at the state, and was working with other towns and cities to reduce expenses through shared services. . . I promise integrity, fairness, transparency, and communication with all residents.”

She was the longtime layout editor of the Haddam Bulletin. She also served as a Justice of the Peace from 2013 until her passing.

On Saturday, a message went out to Haddam residents from current First Selectman Bob McGarry: “It is with deep regret that I’m writing to inform you that former First Selectwoman Melissa Schlag passed away last night. She was well known for her involvement in our community, her passion for the environment and conservation, and her work on the Haddam Bulletin. I admired the courage she had to stand up for her convictions. She did a lot for Haddam. She will be missed. My condolences go to her loved ones and friends.”

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