se·​lect·​man | \ sə-ˈlek(t)-ˌman How to pronounce selectman (audio) , -ˌlek(t)-ˈman, -ˈlek(t)-mən; ˈsē-ˌlek(t)-ˌman \

Definition of selectman

: one of a board of officials elected in towns of all New England states except Rhode Island to serve as the chief administrative authority of the town

Examples of selectman in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web In 2005, Joseloff was elected as first selectman of Westport, a position that is the functional equivalent of mayor. Zoe Christen Jones, CBS News, "Gordon Joseloff, longtime CBS News journalist, dies at 75," 9 Nov. 2020 The group has endorsed Sen. Paul Formica, an incumbent Republican and former first selectman of East Lyme who represents eight communities in southeastern Connecticut, including New London. Christopher Keating,, "Newtown attorney Monte Frank succeeds the late Oz Griebel at election reform movement; group endorses two Connecticut Republicans, two Democrats," 14 Oct. 2020 MacLachlan released statements from lawmakers that included Norm Needleman, a Democratic state senator who also serves as the first selectman of Essex. Christopher Keating,, "State Rep. Jesse MacLachlan, only Republican to support police bill, suddenly drops out of November race," 11 Aug. 2020 Needleman is first selectman of Essex, and part of his motivation to run for the legislature and take his role as energy panel co-chair arose from continual frustrations with Eversource as a town official. Jon Lender,, "Jon Lender: Probes of Eversource and United Illuminating will face connections of political influence," 14 Aug. 2020 There is the first selectman—the local equivalent of mayor—and the chairman of the Greenwich finance board, as well as an ardent backer who serves in the state House of Representatives. Evan Osnos, The New Yorker, "How Greenwich Republicans Learned to Love Trump," 3 May 2020 In January, after Newtown’s first selectman claimed the law practice had a conflict there, Hollister and another developer parted ways. Jacqueline Rabe Thomas, ProPublica, "This Lawyer Fought Housing Segregation. Now Wealthy Suburbanites Want to Fire His Firm.," 25 Sep. 2019 On March 16, town selectmen voted to postpone the election. Jessica Huseman, ProPublica, "Who Has Emergency Authority Over Elections? Nobody’s Quite Sure.," 6 Apr. 2020 Hingham selectmen have chosen the international firm Suez Water Technologies & Solutions to run the local water company for the town. Johanna Seltz,, "Hingham picks firm to run local water company," 18 Feb. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'selectman.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of selectman

1635, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for selectman

Time Traveler

The first known use of selectman was in 1635

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Last Updated

23 Nov 2020

Cite this Entry

“Selectman.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 20 Jan. 2021.

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More Definitions for selectman


se·​lect·​man | \ si-ˈlekt-mən, -ˌman How to pronounce selectman (audio) \

Legal Definition of selectman

: one of a board of officials elected in towns of all New England states except Rhode Island to serve as the chief administrative authority of the town

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