Letter to the Editor Thomas Jefferson

Vote Your Conscience, Not in Response to Propaganda and Hate

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Letter to the editor,

This week I received a very disturbing call from a member of the Darien Republican Town Committee. As a lifelong Republican and someone who has always supported the Republican candidates, I politely explained that my vote this time would be for Tara Ochman. My response was met with false innuendos and fear mongering over low income housing, as the caller cited the business profession of her “two largest donors.” Interestingly, I personally know that his references were untrue. When I questioned his facts, with the truth, the phone fell silent. It is disturbing to think that some within my own party are stooping this low.

Letter to the Editor 2 cents Parcel Post

Ochman Responds to Letter Writer Who Said He Didn’t Get a Reply From Her on Zoning Testimony

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UPDATE: Earlier today, Wednesday, Darienite.com published a letter to the editor (below) from Benoît Jamar of Raiders Lane saying that first selectman candidate Tara Ochman had said in the candidates debate that she had testified in Hartford against the “proposed ‘take over'” of town zoning regulations by the state. He said Ochman’s campaign had not responded to his request for the transcript of that testimony. Ochman has replied today in a letter to Jamar (also below) that she had not, in fact, testified in Hartford about zoning, only about education matters, and, after reviewing the debate video, she confirmed that she didn’t say in the debate (or anywhere else) that she had testified about zoning. Ochman sent Darienite.com her emailed reply to Jamar, dated Oct. 24 (this past Sunday), and a copy of her second reply, sent today (Wednesday).

Letter to the Editor Washington 1932

If You Get a Call/Text Saying Something Nefarious About a Candidate — Just Ask the Candidate!

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To the editor:

I’ve lived in Darien for over 30 years and cherish so many things about this community — its generosity of spirit, its commitment to excellence, its drive to excel, its general decency! I know politics is certainly not a sport for the faint of heart, but I was deeply dismayed the other night when a dear friend declared, “It’s just politics” in response to learning about

continued lies and whisper campaigns against Tara Ochman. I have known Tara ever since she and her family moved into Darien nearly 15 years ago. I have been blown away by her intelligence, work ethic and devotion to public service. So many things are better in Darien because of her contributions to the library and Board of Education.

Letter to the Editor Swords WWII

McNally Takes on Causes She Feels Passionately About, Thinks Things Through

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To the editor:

Monica McNally should be our next First Selectman. I wouldn’t put something in writing that I didn’t believe in and I strongly believe in Monica and her team. I met Monica over 20 years ago when our children were in St. Luke’s nursery school together. I have always been impressed by Monica‘s ability to assess a situation.

Letter to the Editor Abraham Lincoln

Terrie Wood: Monica McNally Understands Finance, Listens With Open Mind and Heart

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To the editor:

It’s a pleasure to write this letter in support of Monica McNally as Darien’s next first selectman. Currently serving on the Board of Selectmen, Monica brings a wide range of relevant experience to the responsibilities of first selectman. She’s served in leadership roles for eight years on the RTM and knows the operations of our town. She was a successful financial advisor for 10 years with Smith Barney and thoroughly understands bond markets, interest rates and cash flow. Monica was a founding member of OPUS for Person to Person and has chaired several other community organizations.

Letter to the Editor Washington 1932

Tara Ochman Reaches Across Political Divides, Is Keen to Find Solutions, Watches Spending

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To the editor:

I am writing to express my unqualified support for Tara Ochman as first selectman of the Town of Darien. As a community, we have lived through an exhausting pandemic, increasingly volatile weather patterns, and increasingly vitriolic political discourse. At the same time, we have been blessed with a sizable influx of new Darien residents, who have strengthened our community by just being a part of it. Tara is uniquely qualified to provide the leadership that our town needs at this time. She is a visionary, keen to find solutions for the local impact that storms and flooding will have on our homes and businesses.

Letter to the Editor John Greenleaf Whittier

Tara Ochman Has the Experience and Mindset to Tackle Darien’s Challenges

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To the editor:

Although I am a Democrat, I believe many key issues facing Darien are less about partisanship, and more about sound, competent, forward-thinking strategy and fiscal management. That said, I’ve been researching our two candidates, Tara Ochman, and Monica McNally, to make a truly informed decision on the best candidate for the job, and I have concluded that person is Tara Ochman. As a 15-year resident of Darien, I have been impressed with Tara Ochman’s astute leadership of the Board of Education over the last several years, and in particular, during the unprecedented challenges of the last 18+ months. I credit her, and the BOE, and of course our administrators, teachers, and school staff, with keeping our schools open and functioning throughout most of 2020/2021 in either hybrid or full-time mode, something many other school systems did not accomplish. After watching Candidates Night hosted by The League of Women Voters to get a better sense of Mrs. Ochman and Mrs. McNally’s positions, it is apparent that Mrs. Ochman has a clear and informed vision, strategy, and the leadership chops to evolve Darien during these complex times.

Letter to the Editor Farming

As a Selectman, Mike Burke Will Hold Others Accountable, No Matter Their Party

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To the editor:

What truly matters in town leadership and management? Mike Burke is in a contest for Darien Selectman whose candidates all meet intellectual and relatable competence for the job. They are all kind people with a public service record. But I realize after a recent candidates’ discussion event, the ONE required quality that rises above all others, Mike Burke has. Residents rely on town officials for this ONE, sometimes invisible but hugely important attribute.

Letter to the Editor Abraham Lincoln

Board of Ed Wasn’t Transparent When First Selectman Candidate Ochman Was Chair

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To the editor:

I am the business manager of Trumbull Public Schools, and in the past 13 years have had similar responsibilities in Ridgefield and Plymouth. In the interests of full-disclosure and transparency, I have routinely provided the Boards of Finance in those towns any financial information they requested (redacting students’ names to protect confidentiality). None of the Boards of Education in those towns invoked the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) before such information was shared. In one town I met with the Board of Finance monthly to review the school budget. Ms. Ochman’s attempt to utilize Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) to stonewall the Darien Board of Finance’s request for data to update its five-year projections is ludicrous.

Jayme Stevenson online Chamber talk June 20 2020

First Selectman on GOP Board of Selectmen Candidates: Exceptional, Experienced, Committed

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To the editor:
When it comes to politics, local issues are the things that impact our daily lives the most. 
Safe neighborhoods, a vibrant downtown, thoughtful development, great schools, clean parks, well-maintained sidewalks, roads and public facilities and best-in-class emergency services — at a sustainable price for tax payers — are foundational to our quality of life. The people we elect as our local leaders matter! Local leaders set the vision for our town and, important in these divisive times, the tone of policy and political discourse. They determine the size of your local tax bill. Our leaders should advocate for Darien beyond our borders and must be willing to support our town’s future free from unsolicited regional and state interference. 
There is no greater privilege than serving as an elected or appointed official. Thank you for trusting me for 10 years to serve as your first selectman!

Letter

Board of Ed Member Isn’t a Political Post — Evaluate Candidates With a Partisan-Free Lens

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To the editor:

I’m writing to express my support for Julie Best and Stacey Tié for the Darien Board of Education. And, for full disclosure, I’m a registered Republican. I believe it is of vital importance to understand that the Board of Ed is not a political position. Board of Ed members should be chosen in a similar fashion to how our tremendous police department is staffed, accountability and meritocracy. Personally, I just want the most qualified people in charge, regardless of their political backgrounds.

Letter to the Editor coin USA 2 CENTS

Julie Best and Stacey Tie: Curious, Hardworking, Humble, Dialed-in and Passionate About All Kids

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To the editor:

We moved to town for the outstanding public schools like many others. Today we find our schools at a crossroads, and in order to continue to inspire Darien’s children to be lifelong learners who think critically and innovatively while making a difference in the world with integrity, we need leaders that do the same. Leaders that focus on what matters to Darien’s kids, families and community. Julie Best & Stacey Tie are those leaders. Time and time again, Julie and Stacey have shown us the leaders that they are, the people that they are.

Letter to the Editor Newspapers Periodicals

‘I Have Seen Firsthand How Julie and Stacey Advocate For All Students’

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To the editor:

I have written a few versions of my letter in support for Democratic Board of Education candidates Julie Best and Stacey Tie. Truthfully, there are too many positive attributes to discuss in such a limited amount of space. However, after the incidents of hate were displayed earlier this fall, I had an ‘aha’ moment for the focus of my letter: Julie and Stacey will work on behalf of EVERY single child within the Darien Public Schools, regardless of race, ethnicity, religion, gender and sexual identity, ability, popularity, socioeconomic status and parent political affiliation. I have known Julie and Stacey for almost seven years, ever since meeting them on the Council of Darien School Parents. Though we started as colleagues, I now consider them both friends.

Letter to the Editor Theodore Roosevelt

Stacey Tie and Julie Best Understand the Importance of Social-Emotional Learning

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To the editor:

Stacey Tié and Julie Best are the most inclusive candidates for the Board of Education and have my vote. They bring the experience, energy and compassion that’s needed to ensure our schools remain a positive climate for all kids to learn and that teachers have the training and resources they need to deliver successful outcomes for our diverse student population. Our town needs continued remediation to the impacts of COVID-19 on education, such as mental health, social skills, literacy and executive functioning. Now more than ever, we need leaders on the Board of Education who understand the importance of social-emotional learning — because kids with strong mental health and resilience are better able to learn and thrive. As longtime engaged residents of Darien with children of all ages across Darien Public Schools, Stacey and Julie are champions of children.