Donald Paul Lan, Sr., 88, of Boca Raton, Fla., died April 29, 2019. The former NJ secretary of state was born in Newark and raised in Maplewood. He also had lived in Springfield, where he raised his family.
Mr. Lan joined his family’s business, Dell Products, a Hillside food processor. He served as chairman of Dell at the time it was sold to McCain Foods in 1988.
During the 1960s, 1970s, and 1980s, he held several political leadership posts, including chairman of the Springfield Democratic Party, Union County Democratic Party chairman, and National Democratic committeeman. Active in the campaign to elect N.J. Gov. Brendan Byrne, he served as Byrne’s chief of staff and subsequently secretary of state from 1977 to 1982. He also ran in the Democratic primary for governor in 1981.
He graduated from Columbia High School and attended Seton Hall University.
He enlisted in the New Jersey Air National Guard and United States Air Force and received an honorable discharge in 1952.
An avid golfer, he was a member of Cedar Hill Country Club in Livingston and The Polo Club in Boca Raton. He was a longtime member of Temple Sha’arey Shalom in Springfield.
He is survived by his wife of 68 years, Hannah; two sons, Donald, Jr. (Debbie) and Richard (LeeAnne); his daughter, Barbara Lan (Dan) Kaplan; 10 grandchildren; and six great-grandchildren.
Services were held May 2 with arrangements by Bernheim-Apter-Kreitzman Suburban Funeral Chapel, Livingston. Memorial contributions may be made to Trustbridge Hospice Foundation, 5300 East Ave., West Palm Beach, FL 33407.