I am a registered unaffiliated voter. Always have been; always will be. I like to vote for the people I think are best suited for the job, no matter their party affiliation. I usually stay out of politics other than to cast my votes, but in our upcoming town election, I feel very strongly about two of the candidates. In my mind, Jenny Emery and Mark Fiorentino have outstanding qualifications for the positions for which they hope to be elected.
A candidate for Board of Finance, Jenny has had a remarkable 40-year career in the world of public sector finance and local government risk management. Her work in West Hartford as the Risk and Benefits Manager in the 80s and with the Connecticut Conference of Municipalities led to establishment of a risk pool from which Granby benefits to this day. Since then, she has worked with national corporations, but her passion is helping towns and schools across the country form local insurance collaborations that have saved billions of taxpayer dollars.
Recently, Jenny has taken the position of voluntary executive director of the Friends of Holcomb Farm. For 10 years, she has been an extremely valuable member of the Board of Education, through which she is a representative to the Granby Education Foundation, the Capital Program Priorities Advisory committee, the Intra-board Advisory Committee and the town’s Health Benefits Committee. She has worked diligently on the board’s annual budget. Since that budget comprises 67 percent of the town’s budget, she would bring a wealth of knowledge and understanding of its needs to the Finance board.
Mark Fiorentino is the perfect candidate for First Selectman. He may be registered in one party, but his views are very much bipartisan. Over the years I have known Mark, I have experienced first-hand how hard he works for our entire community. He has participated in/worked for many varied Granby organizations. Most recently he is an eight-year member of the Board of Education, vice-chair for the past 4 years. He is also a vice-president of the Friends of Holcomb Farm, where he is runs the Fresh Access food program. He has served on the Capital Program Priorities Advisory Committee, the Kelly Lane School Building Committee, the Conservation Commission, the Plan of Conservation and Development Advisory Committee and has been the Granby representative to the Capital Area Education Council.
As a parent of a daughter and son who graduated from GMHS, he has been a travel basketball coach, a Little League coach, and a football volunteer. (Who do you think was in that mascot costume?) He also writes the entertaining Waypoints column for this paper.
His view for the town is to develop and implement a plan that sustains its success in a way that the taxpayers can support. He is a land-use lawyer with 30 years of experience working with and for businesses and government entities at local, regional, state and federal levels. His aim is to improve communications between town government and residents, and to collaborate on a set of goals that continues the great things we have going in Granby, and the things on which improvements can be made. Mark notes, “Building consensus is what I do for a living.” That would certainly come in handy as First Selectman.