Stuyvesant supervisor race tops busy town ballot

STUYVESANT—Charles K. Stiffler is running uncontested to fill an unexpired term as highway superintendent here, on the Republican, Conservative and Independence lines. Otherwise, all town races in the November 3 General Election are contested.

Along with Edson W. Folmsbee, Frank Serpico, former New York City Police Department whistleblower, is running for Town Board on the Democratic line, and has brought national attention to that race. Mr. Folmsbee also has the Independence line. On the Republican and Conservative lines are Kelley Williams and Thomas S. Burall; Mr. Burrall also has the Independence line. The term is four years.

Running for a two-year term as supervisor are incumbent Ron Knott, on the Republican, Conservative and Independence lines, and challenger Lee Jamison, on the Democratic, Working Families and Women’s Equality party lines.

Town supervisor

Ron Knott, 60, an enrolled Republican, seeks his third term as supervisor. Previously, he served on the Town Board for six years. Born in Albany, he graduated from Ichabod Crane High School and works for Knotts Enterprise, Inc. He and his wife, Cathy, have three grown children and six grandchildren.

Asked about community activities, Mr. Knott said, “I currently spend all my free time as town/county supervisor.”

“I have enjoyed my time served as supervisor for the town of Stuyvesant,” Mr. Knott said in his candidate statement. “It has been a pleasure to represent Stuyvesant at the Columbia County Board of Supervisors, and I would like another two-year term to continue working on town/county initiatives that I have been involved with.”

Lee Jamison, 65, has chaired the Stuyvesant Democratic Committee for 10 years. In addition to her party endorsements, the Hudson Valley Area Labor Federation has endorsed her.

Ms. Jamison holds a BA degree from Bennington College, and an MSW from Adelphi University. For the past 2 ½ years she has worked for Columbia Memorial Health’s Outpatient Mental Health Services for people with developmental disabilities. Previously, she worked for 18 years for Dennis Marcus, MD, & Associates Outpatient Mental Health Services for people with developmental disabilities and prior to that, 12 years as Coarc director of day services.

Ms. Jamison’s community activities include Columbia County Community Services Board, trustee of Kinderhook Memorial Library, Stuyvesant Historic Depot Restoration Committee, Stuyvesant Pathways (a not-for-profit community action group of the Open Space Institute) and last year’s Lincoln Funeral Train 150-year Commemoration Committee. She is a past board chair of the Philmont Hearth.

Ms. Jamison grew up on a dairy farm in Thompson Ridge, Orange County, “with a family that was politically active because they believed in the democratic process at the grassroots,” she writes. “I raised two children as a single working mom, and I am active locally for environmental issues—for clean air, soil and water.” Ms. Jamison’s two grown children graduated from Ichabod Crane High School, and she has one grandchild.

In her candidate statement, Ms. Jamison notes that of 23 supervisors in the county, only two are women. “It’s time to give women the vote in Columbia County. Women need a seat at the table when it comes to decision-making about our lives, education, jobs and environment.

Further, she writes, “It’s time to change the one-party, ‘good ol’ boys club.’ This has only led to the insider deals seen (and reprimanded by a state audit) with the County Economic Development Corporation, needless proposed airport expansion, dismissiveness toward the county’s Environmental Management Council and unequal justice for those seen as outsiders vs. those who are connected and protected,” Ms. Jamison writes.

“It’s time to acknowledge climate change and catch up with support for opportunities to ameliorate environmental degradation, protect our shoreline and promote sustainable, local, economic opportunities,” she writes.


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