Political mailbag

Elect Kennelly

I am not running for the Board of Education this year. Of those who are running, my choice is Jennifer Kennelly.

James H. Lee


Don't whitewash

the BOE audit

I think it's great that town officials and (Board of Education) BOE members seem to be agreeing with an operational/efficiency audit of our educational system. But, if we are to do this, we should do it properly to maximize the outcome.

I get concerned when I hear officials supporting the audit be done by town employees. This effort should be done by an independent third party with no ties to the town. I get concerned when I hear the audit should be focused. I think just the opposite. The audit should start with a blank sheet. We are all aware that teacher/administrative salaries are dictated by contract, but, a third party audit should be able to look into any area where operational improvement can be obtained (i.e. justification of positions/expenses/contracts that may be excessive or unnecessary).

We expect this audit to uncover new ways for the BOE to be more effective with the funds that have been appropriated. We the People (WTP) want to know that the town and the BOE are spending our tax dollars wisely; that was our No. 1 reason for asking for an audit. The idea is not to acknowledge the validity of the current system and its budget. Of course the expenses are valid; the annual financial audit has already established that. I think that Pam Iacono described it best when she stated that, "We need to figure out where every penny is and use it to the best of our ability."

WTP has contacted a nationally recognized firm that conducts such audits. We have been told that they can charge a fee or can be hired on a contingency basis (i.e. a percent of savings). They have told us that an operational audit would take approximately one to two months. Timing is critical; the town is currently in negotiation with union representatives. The negotiations should incorporate audit recommendations. What good is negotiating a contract that hampers the ideas that come out of the audit? It seems backward to me.

WTP are calling upon our leaders not to whitewash this audit. Make it a useful exercise in which the system is made more effective by spending more efficiently thus making the budget dollars go further. Do it soon so that the audit recommendations can be incorporated into union contracts currently being negotiated.

Bob Forcellina

We the People of Fairfield

Liu will produce results

I am writing in support of Perry Liu's candidacy for a seat on the Fairfield Board of Education. I am voting for Perry primarily for three reasons: Liu understands the needs children, he is committed to their education and he will be effective at getting the job done.

Liu understands children's educational needs; he connects with them and they respond so well to him. I first met Liu five years ago when he was conducting the music program at my children's preschool here in Fairfield. My children always looked forward to Liu's lessons and would talk about that part of their day as a highlight.

Liu is committed to education and has tirelessly volunteered at our elementary school. He was the Board of Education representative, has served on the PTA executive committee, and has chaired many committees such as the yearbook committee and a fund raiser committee. In addition to all of this, Liu has chaperoned many field trips including one that I was responsible for -- the second grade CANE beach field trip last year. I have seen firsthand how he is genuinely interested in teaching the children and has a great attitude while doing so.

Liu will produce results. All of his volunteer efforts have been incredibly successful and I can say that my kids, along with many others from our school, have been the lucky beneficiaries of his work. Based on his past experience I am sure he will be similarly effective as a member of the Board of Education. The Burr community has benefitted tremendously thanks to Liu and his unending energy and commitment to our children's education and general well being. I think the time has come for all of Fairfield to benefit from what he can do for our kids, so I would ask you to vote for Liu for the Board of Education on Nov. 3.

Pam Holly Corcoran


Keep Giaquinto

Mike Giaquinto has served the town admirably on TPZ for eight years and if you add his service to the Conservation Commission, he has been in active service to the town for the past 19 years. He has been elected to the TPZ three times before because of two main reasons: 1) He is an experienced engineer; 2) He is truly independent.

Giaquinto understands the neighbors' concerns and he also understands that he serves all of the people of Fairfield. Most of us don't realize how crucial our TPZ is to the town's well being, not only because they control development, but because they serve as the main economic impetus to the town. We truly need someone like Giaquinto to represent everyone in this town on the commission.

Giaquinto hasn't spent his time merely opposing projects; he has spent his time working to make what was proposed better. He doesn't walk in to a hearing with a predetermined opinion before even hearing the presentation. He spends more time listening than talking while there. He is knowledgeable about the issues and is an expert in his field. He is also considerate of the presenters, fair to every applicant, as well as to their supporters and opponents. Finally, Giaquinto is thoughtful in his deliberations and creative and positive in crafting conditions that make a project work for the community.

I strongly encourage your support of Giaquinto. He is a petition candidate on the ballot on slot 10D.

Marie Donahue


Hold first selectman


Fairfield is blessed with a political tradition and system which enlists scores of volunteers to its elected and appointed boards and commissions. These concerned citizens are usually affiliated with one of the two major parties, but for the most part are dedicated first and foremost to the town and not their party affiliation. I believe this endemic spirit of non-partisanship stems from our non-centralized system of government, where power is diversely distributed among the Boards and Commissions. While not always the most efficient system I think it has served us well.

As first selectmen, John Sullivan and Jacky Durrell led this town for more than 30 consecutive years in this town-first, non-partisan manner. Sure, there were political rivalries and battles during these years, but that was the friendly yet competitive process at work that ultimately fostered what was best for the town. Call it checks and balances, or just the democratic process, their political battles were always rooted in a mutual understanding that all, Democrats, Republicans and unaffiliateds, were seeking to do what best served the citizens of Fairfield.

I submit the current first selectman has not embraced this same spirit and tradition of his predecessors. Over the course of his 14 years on the Board of Selectmen, 10 of the last 12 years as first selectman, decisions rooted in party first and blind loyalty to the incumbent have seeped into the political culture, nurturing a brand of partisanship previously unknown in Fairfield. Indeed, we now have the current Democratic chairman of the Board of Education's 22-year-old son running for a seat on the same board. While literally depending on his mother's own political lawn signs, does the Democratic leadership really think townspeople are so na�ve as to believe that his will be an independent voice on this Board which controls over 60 percent of Fairfield's $247 million budget?

Over the past two years, the Democratic controlled RTM has approved Ken Flatto's budget gimmickry and political agenda in near lockstep fashion. Most Republicans and a few independent-minded Democrats voiced opposition while raising legitimate questions and issues that challenged the otherwise unbridled actions of the first selectman. Unfortunately, Flatto's stronghold on the Democrat-controlled RTM has stifled purposeful debate and fostered a legislative and executive process that is anything but transparent; it has fomented and fostered partisanship for the sake of party and not for the sake of the town.

I do not suggest that this relatively new and toxic political culture is one sided in the sense that it only comes from Democrats. Quite the contrary, both parties are afflicted and so too, therefore, is the Town. The question comes down to this: how do we return to the political playing field on which Sullivan and Durrell so gracefully competed? I believe the answer rests with abandoning the current unbridled, one-sided governance. Without a Board of Selectmen race in this year's municipal election means that a return to genuine checks and balances can only be accomplished by changing the majority party on the RTM.

We have recruited some of the best and brightest members of our community on the Republican ticket. As chairman of the Republican Town Committee I ask that you vote to bring balance back to our town's system of governance. Vote to hold our first selectman accountable and foster a less partisan and more transparent budget process. On Nov. 3, vote for the Republican team on the top line (Row A).

James Baldwin


Albin is what we need

It is too bad most of the town had not heard Josh Albin speak at the recent debates for Board of Education. If you had been there, you would have heard an articulate young man speaking about the current state of education from the perspective of a recent graduate from the school system. Not having an ax to grind or a personal agenda (no kids in the school system) he had many useful ideas. From calling for transparency that would allow a Web site to show where our tax dollars are really being spent to curriculum changes that should be discussed. Mr. Albin, we believe would work for all of us to build a better school system.

The Board of Education budget makes up a huge portion of our property taxes. It would be nice to see some new faces, with new ideas, and no hidden agenda represent All the tax payers. This is why we urge you to support and vote for Albin.

This recent college graduate would bring a lot of recent experience to the table which is what we need.

Bob and Roberta Stone


Elect Liu

Allow me to introduce you to Perry Liu. Currently running for a seat on the Fairfield Board of Education, he is exactly who the town of Fairfield, our students and our families need from a leadership perspective in the all too important area of education.

The father of two sons, a tireless school volunteer, a PTA member and former Executive Board Member, Liu is a former Board of Education representative for Burr Elementary School as well. Also a teacher, Liu is a seasoned listener and leader who understands the educational environment inside and outside the classroom, and as both a parent and an educator, recognizes the importance of strong communications between the Board of Education and other town bodies, as well as between the board and the general public.

Lastly, Liu will strive to be proactive. Before problems become too big to ignore, he will work to solve them in the best, most cost-effective way. As a school volunteer and Burr Elementary parent, I have seen Liu in action and will be proud to cast my vote for him for the Board of Education. Please join me in electing someone who pledges to make a difference for Fairfield schools.

Brigg Hyland


`Old guard' should

step aside

Jim Baldwin, the chair of the Republican Town Committee (RTC) and former town attorney, is wrong when he states that the Democrat majority on the Representative Town Meeting (RTM) has approved the last two budgets submitted by the first selectman, Ken Flatto. Never in the history of the town has the RTM approved the first selectman's budget. Under the "decentralized" -- and overly politically bureaucratic -- system of government that Baldwin defends in his letter, the first Sselectman submits a budget for approval to the elected Board of Selectman (BOS) for review, modification and approval. The BOS then submits their budget to the Board of Finance (BOF) for review, modification and approval. Then, and only then, the BOF submits the budget to the RTM. Ken Flatto does not submit the budget to the RTM although in the confusion that is Fairfield town government many may believe that.

In the last two years, Ralph Bowley, the Republican on the BOS has, along with Flatto, approved every budget the BOS sent to the BOF. And in the last two years, the Republican dominated BOF unanimously approved every budget it sent to the RTM for approval. And while it is true that a significant majority of Republicans have voted against those two Republican executive endorsed budgets, not every Republican on the RTM joined in. Two years ago Paul Fattibene who is running for the Board of Education this year voted for the budget while Tony Hwang, who is now a state Representative, chose to abstain. And last year Fattibene again voted for the budget along with Republican Minority Leader James Walsh and a few other Republicans. The budget process was anything but partisan as Baldwin suggests.

So while I agree with Baldwin that the town would be better off with a large Republican majority on the RTM, I don't for one minute think it's about stopping the partisanship he claims surrounds the budget process. It's about finding more Republicans on the RTM willing to stand up and stop the uninformed and irresponsible decisions driving the out of control spending promoted by the bipartisan bureaucratic elected town executive branch -- the BOS and the BOF, which just happens to include Flatto among its members.

And for the record, while I am a registered Republican, I am not the Jim Brown running for Board of Finance. Fairfield's governance structure is a case study in how not to govern a large municipality and until the RTC embraces changing it in the favor of smaller, understandable and accountable political government consistent with core Republican principles, I won't attempt to join its ranks. I'll just stay on the outside and continue to criticize the huge dysfunctional and expensive mess that Baldwin and his "old guard" Republicans on the RTC embrace in the name of stupid tradition. I'll also continue to offer up suggestions that could save the taxpayer a ton if only the "old guard" would get out of the way!

Jim Brown


Vote Democrats

Once again the town of Fairfield can take a bow. The November 2009 issue of Connecticut Magazine ?has rated Fairfield No. 1 of 16 town and cities with a population of more than 50,000. We were also rated No. 1 in Education, No. 2 in Crime, No. 2 in Economy and No. 4 in Leisure. We should all be very proud of our accomplishments over the years.

Having been involved in Fairfield politics and government since 1971 under five different first selectmen and several different selectmen and Town Clerks from both parties, I was extremely disappointed to read Jim Baldwin's description of our current first selectman, Ken Flatto. He obviously doesn't know him very well.

Like his predecessors who served for many years, Flatto has been able to build on their successes and accomplishments. John Sullivan's legacy includes five year planning, AAA bond rating, excellent schools, and many acres of open space. Jackie Durrell continued these traditions and left us a refreshing facade to Fairfield Center. She will also be remembered for Penfield II and the gazebo on Sherman Green, among other things. Unfortunately, space does not allow for a list of the numerous initiatives of the Flatto administration. Presumably, that was the reason he was re-elected five times, and will be the first to serve for a four year term.

All three leaders have had visions of revitalizing the Commerce Drive area of town. All three added to our inventory of affordable housing, recreation and open space, and improved our schools, Senior services, and our public health and safety. Suffice it to say our leaders recognized that Rome wasn't built in a day. They did what they could and then passed the baton. This is "reacting" and planning at it's best.

Baldwin describes our bipartisan government. Yes, it takes a village. Where I disagree entirely from his erroneous commentary is that he feels that all that is in the past. This couldn't be further from the truth. Bipartisan government is very much alive and still is the foundation of our appointed and elected boards and commissions. By law, there must be minority representation.

Over ten years, Flatto has appointed as many Republicans as Democrats to town Commissions, including Jacky Durrell, Carl Dickman, Jill. Kelly and many other notable Republicans whom he respects. Any citizen is free to submit names for consideration.

The only situation in which minority representation is not required is in the elected makeup of our Representative Town Meeting. I remember a two-year period when there were 53 Democrats and only three Republicans. At the present there are twenty-six Democrats and twenty-four Republicans, and yet most of the agenda items easily pass with forty to fifty votes. Incidently, the Board of Finance has had Republican majorities during Flatto's entire tenure.

RTM agenda items are seldom ideological or partisan in nature The 50 members vote their conscience after much debate and public comment. And 99 percent of the items have already been approved by the three members of the Board of Selectmen, and the nine members of the Board of Finance, and have been also scrutinized by other bipartisan boards and committees.

Thirty-four of the RTM candidates running for re-election are incumbents. Fifteen are Republicans; 19 are Democrats. That leaves 16 seats for newcomers. Although I am a Democrat, and urge you to support Democrats, I am confident that all who are victorious will do what is best for Fairfield to help keep it No. 1.

Judy Ewing


We need Kupchick

Brenda Kupchick is someone we know and trust. She's dedicated herself to our community for over ten years. I worked with Brenda when she organized a grassroots education advocacy group in the 1990s called One Voice. The group brought many parents together from all over town to work together to improve communication between parents and the Board of Education advocating for long term solutions. Because of the hard work of One Voice many school projects that lay dormant for years were moved forward.

Kupchick is now finishing out her term on the board of education where she really listened to the community and worked hard to always be fair. Kupchick has always been a strong thoughtful advocate for transparency and open dialog. I'm always amazed at her energy and tenacity when fighting for issues she believes in. Kupchick has a wealth of experience from serving two terms on the RTM, working in an Congressional office for many years and now for Sen. John McKinney in Hartford.

Many of us in the Stratfield district are happy to have Kupchick come forward once again to represent us.

Now more than ever, we need Brenda Kupchick's integrity and experience.

Sarah J Ellis


Vote for Republican candidates

Currently, the Board of Education has a six-member Democrat majority; the Republicans hold only the three-seat minority representation required by the town charter. Only one Republican seat is not up in this election, thus mandating that at least two be elected. The Board of Ed's job is to work in a non-partisan manner to develop and approve education policies and to ensure the superintendent develops and follows protocol and procedures consistent with those policies; politics are to be left at the door.

In order to add not only political balance but also strong education advocates to the board, please consider voting for the three Republican candidates -- Pam Iacono, Paul Fattibene and Tim Kery. They are all well qualified -- Iacono with an HR background and current board member, Fattibene as an attorney and a long-serving RTM member, and Kery with a business background and a Fairfield native, and all with children in our public schools.

In the same vein, Kevin Kiley, the current Board of Finance chair, has advocated for quality education while considering the needs of the seniors and the financial ability of the town. He, too, would appreciate your vote.

Betty Ann O'Shaughnessy


Rowlands fair,


We are very fortunate to have Will Rowlands seeking election for RTM District 1 in Fairfield. I have had the honor of knowing Rowlands for many years now. I first met him when he was managing editor of the Westport News. I am a Westport resident, bit I am also a business owner in Fairfield. I own Tucker's Cafe and have been a business and property owner in Fairfield for more than 20 years.

As editor of the Westport News, I was always impressed with Rowlands' ability to look at all sides of a situation and respond with fair and accurate judgement. He has always made the best interest of the citizens his most important priority. A lifelong resident of the area and a Fairfield resident for the past five-and-a-half years, he truly has what is best for the town close to his heart.

As a long time property owner, I have seen many changes if Fairfield. I have seen a tremendous amount of positive growth. When I first opened Tucker's Cafe, there was very little business going on in my area. Now there are many thriving businesses in the Commerce Drive area. Will is someone who would work hard to address both the economic and educational needs of Fairfield.

It is my pleasure to encourage the people of Fairfield to vote for Rowlands for RTM District 1. I believe he will do a great job.

Denise Lamoureux

Owner, Tucker's Cafe,


Bring Burke back

Please vote on Nov. 3 for William (Liam) Burke for Zoning Board of Appeals (ZBA). He previously served on the ZBZ for more than five years and twice was elected secretary by the other members. After his last term on the ZBA expired ,he represented his neighbors on the RTM for a term, but would like to return to the ZBA. He is a lifelong Fairfield resident. He graduated from Tomlinson (then a junior high school) Fairfield Prep, Colgate University (cum laude) and UConn Law School (with honors). At UConn Law he won the American Jurisprudence awards in Real Estate Transactions and Evidence. He practices law in Fairfield with his father, Dominick.

Kevin Flynn


Rowlands right

for RTM

I've known Will Rowlands for many years. He was the editor of the Westport News, and I'm a columnist for that paper. As a newspaper columnist, you depend on your editor for help and support; you also become very familiar with his work habits and his character.

What impresses me about Rowlands is his responsiveness, his attention to detail, his intelligence, his sense of humor -- and above all, his integrity. All of these will serve him well as a member of the Fairfield RTM, and I wholeheartedly support his candidacy.

Hank Herman


Liu will reach out

to community

I am supporting Perry Liu in his race for Board of Education -- he will be a huge asset to the board and will work with other board members, with other town bodies, and with the community to ensure that our schools' quality remains high while our taxes are not overly impacted.

Liu has volunteered at his son's school, and through his position as its PTA BOE representative he saw firsthand how the board works -- what the Board's strengths are, and what its weaknesses are. He will bring to the table a parent's perspective and insight, as well as the knowledge that can only come by attending board meetings and knowing the processes that govern the board.

Liu is concerned with issues such as school space and the budget, but he will not ignore the fact that as a Board of Education member, the primary focus should always be on curriculum and the children. He also understands that for those without students in public school, it can be difficult to understand the high costs of education, especially when taxes continue to rise -- he will reach out to the community at large and urge the board to become more transparent and open in their dealings with other town bodies, and with the average citizen.

I urge you to support Liu for the Fairfield Board of Education -- he will work to keep our schools and our community strong.

Yolanda Karpel


Age doesn't matter

I'm writing to endorse Josh Albin's candidacy for the Fairfield Board of Education (BOE). This 22-year-old speaks with perspective and substance far beyond his years--and, more to the point, far beyond many older folks who have sought a BOE seat.

I'm a 41-year-old father of two girls attending North Stratfield School and a PTA VP. In these difficult times, we can't afford another board member who has no plan, says the same old thing, who listens to parents but has no solutions.

Yes, Albin is young, but age doesn't necessarily qualify you to make decisions about education policy. Isn't today's mantra that we need leaders who can pull the cobwebs off old, dated policies and old-boy politics? Albin will do that. He understands how the BOE works, what its job is, and why many times it's less effective than it should be. He knows how to stay on topic, how one policy change affects another. He's specific on how to make things better -- what not to do in a redistricting plan; how and when to negotiate with the teachers union in a tough budget year; even how, in adjusting school vacation days, the town sports schedule must be considered. He has lived through redistricting and knows how it affects students. Yet, he comes with no personal agenda for his own children, as he has none.

He believes that education policies affect the entire town, not just the students. He can describe how they affect property values, cost of living, town budgets and taxes. He doesn't just speak to the need for change; he understands how to achieve it. Listen carefully to what he has to say. Don't base your decision on his age. Josh Albin is his own man, and he's out to prove it.

Marc Patten


Rowlands right


I am writing on behalf of Will Rowlands, who is running for a seat on the RTM in Fairfield, because I think he will be such a fine representative for the people of Fairfield. Rowlands was my editor at the Westport News, where I am a columnist. He was a great pleasure to work with, which is an important quality for someone who needs to function as part of a large governing group.

Rowlands is smart, knowledgeable about local and national matters, and has a sincere and unselfish interest in the good of his community. His experience as a newspaper editor has given him an objective view of issues and an inside knowledge of how our towns work. Finally, Rowlands is friendly, easy to talk with, and a good listener. He would understand and well represent the needs of his district and all the people of Fairfield.

Carol Randel


Liu will work


The Fairfield Board of Education will face many challenges this year -- finding a new superintendent, keeping the school budget lean, and working through complex school space issues in the elementary, middle and high school levels. It is important that we have strong, intelligent, reasoned leadership to guide our schools through these difficult times, so I am supporting Perry Liu in his candidacy for Board of Education.

Liu is a stay-at-home father, a music teacher, a school volunteer and a former PTA Executive Board member who has educated himself about the complexities of the Fairfield school system, and now he wants to put his knowledge to work. In attending numerous Board of Education meetings over the past few years, he can see what's good about the way the Board of Education operates, but he is also aware that there are some things that can be improved. If elected, Liu will work to bring a new era a transparency and fiscal responsibility to the board. He will work with other town bodies, and will reach out to the community as well to make sure that the decisions the board makes are done so with openness.

I hope you will join me in supporting Liu for the Fairfield Board of Education -- he will tirelessly work for our schools and for our community.

Nancy Wasserman




In these challenging financial times, experience matters in managing the finances of our town. Kevin Kiley, our current Board of Finance Chairman, has the experience needed to help guide our town forward and confront these challenges.

I have witnessed first hand Kiley's leadership of the board and his willingness to tackle tough issues which rarely have easy answers.

He always puts the interest of the town first. Kiley balances the need for investment in town infrastructure and services with the financial pressures many of our citizens face in their day-to-day lives. He is committed to properly funding education as well as keeping the tax burden as light as possible, especially for our senior citizens.

I am proud to serve with him and to wholeheartedly endorse him for re-election to the Board of Finance.

Thomas M Flynn,

Fairfield Board of Finance,


Brachfeld for

Board of Finance

I write in support of Ken Brachfeld's candidacy for the Board of Finance. I agree with Brachfeld that a successful Board of Finance should always weigh the costs and benefits of spending taxpayer monies. His career at Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley provide him with the experience and skills necessary to make difficult financial decisions for Fairfield's economic future. As a member of the finance board at Mercy Learning Center, Brachfeld understands the budgetary process. In these challenging economic times, I know Brachfeld will work tirelessly to ensure our precious taxpayer dollars are wisely spent while maintaining the tremendous quality of service we as Fairfield residents enjoy. I ardently endorse his candidacy.

Anthony Jannotta


Liu will bring


I am writing in support of Perry Liu's candidacy for the Fairfield Board of Education. Liu's involvement with children -- his own and others in the community -- through his experiences a teacher, Cub Scout Den Leader, school volunteer and PTA Board member are indicative of his passion for the job and his willingness to get involved.

Fairfield's schools face a number of important issues and Liu has demonstrated an understanding of the implications of the different scenarios the school board is dealing with, and has the perspective to do what is best for all our children and the future of all of Fairfield's public schools.

Liu is also advocating for better communication and openness between the board, other town departments, and the public, as well as a greater openness and transparency in board operations, which will promote an improved understanding of the Board of Education's function and processes. As our schools and our town face many issues, old and new, I think that Liu's approach to leadership will bring the town together so we can collectively work on and solve many of these dilemmas.

Mark Durham


Keep McCarthy Vahey

I am writing in support of Cristin McCarthy Vahey for RTM District 6. McCarthy Vahey has been a member of the RTM since 2005, serving as deputy moderator since last year.

McCarthy Vahey is a dedicated representative. She listens to all sides, she is open-minded and fair, and she is very thoughtful and deliberate in her decision-making. She takes her job, the trust of her constituents and the best interests of Fairfield very seriously.

McCarthy Vahey is an active member of the community, serving the PTA, the Girl Scouts, as well as her house of worship. She selflessly gives her time, her ideas and her effort to help Fairfield continue to be the terrific town it is.

District 6 voters, please join me in supporting Cristin McCarthy Vahey for RTM.

Meg Murray


Kennelly: Depth,


I am delighted to write in support of Jennifer Maxon Kennelly's candidacy for the Fairfield Board of Education. Kennelly is an educator, a parent and a former coach. She has chaired a number of committees of the Stratfield PTA, and she has seen all sides -- academic, budgetary, administrative. Her 20-year resume in education speaks for itself.

Kennelly has the depth and breadth of experience, the strong personal commitment, and thoughtful approach that will contribute to excellence in our schools' educational program and budgets that are "right-sized" for the town's needs and ability to fund those needs. Please join me in voting for Kennelly on Nov. 3.

Doug Jones


Garskof for District 5

Election Day is right around the corner and that means residents throughout Fairfield must make choices on the local candidates who will lead our town for the next two years. I have had the pleasure to work with and get to know each of the candidates running on the Democratic team and I am thrilled by their commitment, energy and eagerness to work for our town.

The Representative Town Meeting elects individuals from local communities and gives you and me a very local connection on issues that impact us directly. I live on the Stratfield side of town and this year I am thrilled to be supporting Josh Garskof for RTM District 5. Garskof is a neighbor and a friend and someone who has shown his commitment to our community through his action and involvement. Garskof is completing his first term on the RTM, serves as treasurer of the Stratfield Village Association, and worked hard to see the Stratfield renovation successfully approved. It is this type of dedicated, involved person that we need working to help lead Fairfield. I hope you will join me in voting for Garskof on Nov. 3.

Kim Fawcett,

State Representative,

Fairfield and Westport

Liu understands


I have known Perry Liu for four years, since his son and my son attended preschool together. We reconnected two years ago when both of us were appointed by our respective PTAs as representatives to the Board of Education. Through attending the Board of Education meetings, Liu decided to take the next step and run for a seat himself. I wholeheartedly support Liu's candidacy for the Fairfield Board of Education -- I believe he will bring a strong voice and a great deal of passion to his work, and I know he will add his knowledge and experience to positively impact the way in which the board runs.

Sometimes, sitting in the audience at BOE meetings, it can be very frustrating, and people often comment at how powerless they feel to affect any change -- they feel as if the Board members just aren't listening to them. If Liu is elected, he will make sure that parents, and the community as a whole, will have a say, and will better understand the decisions that the board makes. He realizes that other town bodies do not always feel that the BoE is willing to work with them on matters of the budget and school space, and he will do his best to improve communication between the boards in town in the hopes that it will benefit every citizen of Fairfield.

While Liu is a parent, he is also a taxpayer, and he understands the concerns of people who do not have children in public school. He will work to keep all future school budgets as low as is realistically possible, without sacrificing the quality that Fairfield public schools are famous for, because he knows that if our schools decline due to budgets being slashed, then our town's worth will also decline. I look forward to Liu winning a seat on the Board of Education -- he is, and will continue to be, a strong, passionate advocate for our schools.

Jessica Gerber


Kery's already started

For three years now, my wife has been the PTA representative to the Board of Education for our children's elementary school. Early on, she told me about "this guy who comes to most of the Board of Ed meetings," who "consistently stands up to speak and always has something intelligent to say." I later found out this guy was Tim Kery. Kery was the budget rep for our children's school for two years, but holding that position did not require that he attend all Board of Education meetings -- and many subcommittee meetings as well -- but he did so anyway. Unlike many of us parents, Kery's meeting attendance and voicing of public comment was not linked to one particular controversial issue (for example, a potential redistricting) as he was interested in all issues related to Fairfield's education system. When I later got to know Kery, after he started the Fairfield School Space Coalition and created a comprehensive Web site on the topic (http://fairfieldschoolspace.com), I asked him how, with four children and a business to run, he could find the time to do all this. He replied, "It's just something I care a lot about."

Membership on the Fairfield Board of Education appears to me to be thankless and grueling. I wouldn't do it myself. The meetings are long, and tempers can run short. It appears to me that the most successful Board members are those who have done a significant amount of preparation (i.e. know the necessary facts) before the meetings, can think through a rational plan in sufficient detail, and can work cohesively with others on implementation.

I believe the best board members will view their tenure as a marathon to reach the greatest potential for our education system within our budget constraints, rather than as a sprint to deal with fires here and there. Kery has already started running this marathon years ago without a formal position on the board. He has decided to run for the Board of Education and hopes to make his involvement official. To me, there is no candidate more natural and deserving of a seat on the Fairfield Board of Education than Kery.

Bill Gerber


Iacono will

benefit town

We are writing in support of Pam Iacono's re-election to the Fairfield Board of Education. As presidents of Riverfield's PTA, we had the honor of working with Iacono as chairman of our newly established Redistricting Committee. Iacono was innovative in trying to connect with our elected officials from the Board of Education, Board of Finance and RTM. She organized and implemented guided tours of our school allowing officials to see first hand how overcrowding was directly affecting our students and teachers. As redistricting chairman, Iacono did an amazing job keeping our parents informed of potential redistricting plans. She wrote regular articles in our weekly newsletter and she was incredibly responsive whenever parents sought additional information from her. Iacono knows the importance of making informed decisions and was determined to keep both members of our community and our elected officials updated. As a result, they both could truly understand issues our school faced. Her open communication skills and prompt responses were much appreciated and always well respected.

Iacono is very well-spoken. She is confident in her beliefs and stands up for what she believes in. She is passionate about her job and dedicated to serving our town's Board of Education with integrity. Our town will benefit immensely if Iacono is re-elected to our Board of Education. Please vote for her on Nov. 3!

Leslie Noland,

Riverfield PTA co-president,


Luciano for District 6

Join me in supporting Joe Luciano for RTM District 6. Luciano has been a long-time Stratfield resident and strong supporter of the Stratfield Village Association. I trust Luciano to make smart and informed decisions for both our community and for the town. His experience in the financial industry and his strength of character make Luciano the perfect choice for District 6.

Vince DeMarco


Richmond for RTM

As a lifelong resident, I have seen many changes in Fairfield. My neighbor and friend Carolyn Richmond shares many of my concerns. Carolyn's husband Bruce's family has been Fairfield (Pine Creek area) residents for more than 100 years and she will work not only to keep the family traditions of Fairfield, but also to keep it affordable for the generations to come. She currently serves as treasurer of the Pine Creek Area Association and has many volunteer activities in support of education and city business from her previous advisory boards, city council and mayoral duties in a small Texas town. I believe District 1 could use her experience and problem solving abilities as Representative to the RTM. Richmond will listen to you and represent you in a fair and balanced way. I ask that you join me in voting for Richmond as our representative.

Joan Fortuna


Vote for Richmond

I ask you to vote for Carolyn Richmond as your District 1 Representative on the RTM. I have been a neighbor, friend and walking buddy for several years. Richmond brings her experience as a former mayor and city council member in Meadowlakes, Texas to Fairfield. In our many morning walking discussions, I have found her to be a good listener, thoughtful and decisive. Richmond believes in using common sense in solving problems. For these reasons, I urge you to vote for Richmond.

Joyce Pierz


Sundman support

Please join me in supporting Eric Sundman for re-election to the RTM for District 1. As a Fairfield Realtor and founder of The Southport Globe Web site, Eric has the knowledge and love of this town that we need in an elected official.

He supports education through his approval of school renovation projects, fiscal responsibility by his annual budgetary votes, and working for his constituents through his support of the Fairfield Senior Tax Relief, handicap access to beaches, and saving our parks. Sundman has the honesty and integrity needed in Fairfield and I hope you will join me in voting for him on Nov. 3.

Jennifer Mulligan