Rising Stars of NY Republican Party

Meet New York State Republican Party’s


2023 Rising Stars

Ryan McCombs

Ryan MCCombs
Monroe County

At 17 yar old Ryan is motivated by a desire to uplift his community and aspires to one day become a public defender. Though not old enough to vote he is proudly pre registered and has been an active member of the Monroe County Young Republicans since he was 16 years old. He has since helped several state and local republican candidates get elected across Monroe County. In his spare time Ryan is a lector and a catechist in the Roman Catholic Church, a cross country athlete, and is an avid pianist and saxophonist. He looks forward to attending college next year at Saint Bonaventure University in Saint Bonaventure New York where he plans to study political science.

Chris Dalton

Christopher Ryan Dalton
Nassau County

While attending the University of Miami, Chris spent three years as Business Manager for the Miami Hurricane newspaper. During that time, he managed half a dozen employees, generated a 50% increase in revenue, and built relationships with both the University and city leaders. In 2017, after graduating with a degree in Business Management, he brought his talents from South Beach to Long Island and accepted a position in state government. For five years, Chris worked for the New York State Assembly, ultimately becoming Deputy Director of the Minority Conference’s regional office, working with twelve Assembly members to make an impact for all Long Islanders. During that time, he helped coordinate over 200 community events, ranging from health seminars and summer beach fairs to school presentations, senior celebrations, and tax grievance seminars.

Today, Chris serves as Chief of Staff to State Senator Steve Rhoades, where he’s helped build a service-minded team committed to delivering results for the 300,000 constituents in the 5th Senate district and for all Long Islanders. He is also President and Co-owner of an independent marketing company, C&M marketing essentials, and is a certified water safety instructor.

Chelsea Hall

Chelsea Hall
New York County

Born in Oil City PA. Chelsea was raised in a conservative household where she was instilled with the values of faith, family, hard work, and respect for authority. She has always taken pride in her morals and her small town upbringing. Chelsea moved to New York City in 2019 and, in the mist of onerous COVID-19 mandates and restrictive lockdowns, she doubled down on her conservative beliefs and sought an outlet of like-minded individuals. She is constantly inspired by the passion, motivation, and dedication of her fellow young Republicans.

Chelsea serves as Chair of the New York Young Republican Club’s Communication Committee and also serves as the New York City regional Vice Chair of the New York State Young Republicans.

Chelsea is a Deep Brain Stimulation Clinical Specialist serving the entire tri-state area. A graduate of Duquesne University with a degree in nursing, she is a Registered Nurse in both Pennsylvania and New York and spent the beginning of her medical career as an ICU nurse in Pittsburgh PA.

Jude Somefun

Jude Somefun
New York County

A resident of New York City for all his life, Jude graduated from Mount St. Michael Academy and later from Columbia University, where he earned his degree in economics. Motivated to participate in the political process by Stephen Barron’s War Room podcast, Jude is an active member of the New York Young Republican Club where he leads the chapter’s Philanthropy Committee and Black Caucus, and was elected a Committeeman with the New York County Republican Committee. He is also a city coordinator for BLEXIT. Passionate about election integrity and restoring America to its founding values, Jude has volunteered for many candidates he believes in, including Tina Forte for Congress and Stefano Forte for State Senate.

Professionally, Jude works in marketing and communications at a New York based engineering firm. Outside of politics, though, he is an avid basketball player and a fan of all New York professional sports teams, including the Metropolitans and Knickerbockers. He is also practicing web development in his free time.

Samantha Colosimo-Testa

Samantha Colosimo-testa
Oneida County

Samantha Colosimo-Testa as a lifelong Utica resident who takes pride in her community. She’s a wife, mother, and educator in the Utica community. She’s a certified elementary school teacher and teaches 5th grade in the Utica city school district. She resides in Utica with her husband well it’s a Utica fireman and two children who attend Utica schools.

Samantha served on the common council from 2011 to 2019 as the 6th ward representative and was fortunate enough to return to the council in 2022 as an at large council person. During her tenure on the council, she was able to accomplish a lot by helping shape the city and the community with the support of its residents. From developing a paving program, instituting a complete streets policy, and thinking of ways to help the community by initiating a flood mitigation task force.

Michael Gentile

Michael Gentile
Oneida County

A graduate of SUNY Potsdam and the crane School of Music, Michael returned home to Utica NY to get back to the city he’s so deeply cares for. He currently serves as program manager of transitional services for upstate cerebral palsy, we manages pre vocational and community programs for adults with developmental disabilities. In this role, he finds joy in working to help others reach their best lives and full potential. He wears many hats serving his community, from overseeing 17 leagues as district administrator for Little League baseball and serving on a regional Advisory Board from Little League to serving as a scholastic coordinator for north Utica pop Warner and a trustee for the landmark Society of greater Utica.

Passionate for politics, Michael is involved with the Oneida County republican committee and also serves as both vice president of the United country young Republicans and most recently as city chair for the Utica republican committee. As chair he’s already made an immediate impact by building teams around him and mainstreaming the political process and he remains laser focused on building a ticket to take back the mayor’s office and gain a majority in the City Council.

Vanessa Jerrett

Vanessa Jerrett
Onondaga County

Is a graduate of  Cicero-North Syracuse high school and a Policy Studies major at the Syracuse University Maxwell School of Citizenship and public affairs.  She is a founding member of the Onondaga County Young Republicans and the chapter’s first female member she has worked to help elected several candidates in central New York including Mark Vanesky for State Assembly. She recently worked with Julie Abbott for the state Senate as a fundraising coordinator.


Payton Sweet

Payon Sweet
Onondaga County

A graduate of Skaneateles high school and current Communications major and Onondaga Community College Payton recently worked as a coordinator on the Julie Abbott for State Senate campaign he was responsible for the day-to-day operations of the campaign and work closely with the Onondaga County Republican committee. He is also a member of the Onondaga County Young Republicans.


andrew davis

Andrew Davis
Orange County

After graduating from Wallkill high school, and rejoined the local 79 laborers union and worked as a laborer in Manhattan NY while also pursuing a degree in political science from SUNY Oneonta. In school, he participated in various philanthropic activities ultimately working with Gift of Life and becoming a member of his school’s Young Americans for Freedom club.

Andrew’s political career began when he joined the staff of former state assemblyman Colin Schmitt where he quickly rose through the ranks and became a valued member of the team. He eventually transitioned out of the government office and was hired by the Republican National Committee as a regional field director overseeing the field program for a New York 18 congressional race. During the 2022 election cycle, Andrew oversaw more than 300,000 voter contacts including more than $100,000 knocked and 200,000 phone calls made by a team of nearly 300 volunteers.

Andrew now serves as director of operations for the New York State Conservative Party working under chairman Gerald Kassar. He is driven by a desire to make a lasting impact in the pursuit of saving our state.