This past Wednesday, October 17th, SOD (StopOverDevelopment) hosted a “Candidate’s Night,” at the DEO Middle School. Candidates running for New Milford’s Town Council were given the opportunity in a public forum to answer questions from residents and SOD members. I am grateful for having been given this opportunity. I want to thank SOD! It was a great idea and a big success. It gave the residents a chance to get to know us better. I also want to thank the residents who attended and asked great questions. And finally I want to thank my fellow candidates. New Milford is lucky to have such a great group to choose from.
Below is the letter I put together for the evening, and read to the audience. I offer it to those who were in attendance as a refresher, and I wish to share it with those who were unable to attend, so they may also have the chance to know me better.
* * *
I have lived in NM for over 22 years with my wife of 23 years. I am the father of three children. I coached soccer for over 15 years through New Milford Recreation. I served as Councilman in 2011 filling in the seat vacated by Keith Bachmann, and I am currently serving on the Zoning Board where I feel I can have a positive impact on issues that are critical to New Milford.
One of my main causes has always been children, because I see them as our future. In 2011 I received a Small Business Leadership Award in recognition of the work I have done on behalf of children and families. I was saluted by the President of Children’s Aid and Family Services for “being a dealer in hope” for the community. Hope is something we all need to help get us through.
I am a man of few words, however I am a man of action. I have a strong sense of responsibility and I do what I can to help people, and to help my town. I live by simple principles: Hard work, making an honest living, doing right by people – being good to my family and friends and neighbors.
After working for numerous years for other companies, I decided to start my own business in June of 1992. I started from scratch, from nothing, and built it into a successful venture.
The confidences I have developed from my experiences have guided me to be successful on whatever projects I take on. The same principles that apply to making things work in your home or your job, also apply to being a successful Councilman:
* You have to be able to work with people.
* You have to be willing to listen.
* You have to be able to put the politics aside and
the petty grievances in order to come to the best decision.
* You have to be able to vote your heart’s intent,
even if it doesn’t agree with your friends at times.
* You have to understand how your decisions impact other people.
* You have to be creative when finding solutions,
especially when it comes to dealing with money.
* Raising taxes is a lazy solution.
* Many towns are finding many different ways to bring in income
without pounding it out of their residents.
* You have to care for the management of the budget like it was your own.
And be willing to put in the time and effort to make things work.
* And you have to want to make a difference instead of just filling a position
for the perks it will give you.
I served in the military during the Vietnam era. Being in the army taught me how to work side-by-side with men and women of all backgrounds. For this, I received a “Meritorious Service” award. I always try to find the common ground instead of focusing on our differences. It has also taught me how to find solutions to difficult problems. There is always a way. You just have to be willing to look for it.
On November 6th you will be able to vote. I hope you will give me the opportunity to bring my successful leadership qualities to New Milford.
Candidate for New Milford Council