ANCRAM—Voters in this town of about 1,600 have five candidates to choose from for two open seats on the Town Board this November 7.
One of the seats is currently empty due to the resignation of former Councilman Chris Thomas this past January. Mr. Thomas, the only Republican on the board, moved out of town with one year remaining in his second four-year term.
Remaining board members opted not to fill his seat by appointment or special election.
The second seat is currently held by Councilwoman Madeleine Israel, whose second four-year term expires at the end of the year.
She is running for re-election this year. The other four candidates are: Bill Broe, Bonnie Hundt, Marie McDermott and Daniel C. Rothvoss, whose name appears on the Conservative ballot line.
Town Supervisor Art Bassin, a Democrat, who is finishing up his fourth two-year term, is running unopposed for a fifth term.
Following are alphabetical profiles of the candidates in the Town Board race except for Mr. Rothvoss.
William J. Broe
Mr. Broe, 65, is a registered Republican endorsed by his party and Conservatives. He is new to the political arena and seeks his first four-year term as Town councilman.
He was born in Keene Valley, Essex County, and graduated from high school.
Mr. Broe is a horse trainer and breeder of Morgan horses. He was formerly a prototype machinist. He holds a United States Patent for a central bolt ultra sonic atomization nozzle.
A widower, Mr. Broe has one daughter and one grandson.
In his statement of issues Mr. Broe wrote: “I have always wanted to do my civic duty in the past but time would never allow. I have the time now and I would like to give back to the town of Ancram. It is important to me to help keep the rural character of this town.”
Ms. Hundt, 63, is an enrolled Democrat endorsed by her party. She seeks her first term on the Town Board, but has a history of involvement in town government.
Born in LaCrosse, WI, she studied at the Western Wisconsin Technical Institute there and the Deloux Beauty Academy in San Diego, CA.
She is the current chair of the Ancram Zoning Board of Appeals and is currently a member of the Ancram Ethics Board. She has served on the: Ancram Comprehensive Plan Committee 2007 to 2012; Ancram Zoning Revisions Committee 2011 to 2014; and was the Town Supervisor of Amenia in Dutchess County from 2003 to 2005. She has served on the Roe Jan Library Advisory Board.
For the past 21 years, Ms. Hundt has co-owned the Hylton Hundt Salon in Millerton.
She is married to Mary Murfitt.
In her statement of issues Ms. Hundt wrote: “I am running for Town Council because I believe I have the experience and the leadership skills to keep Ancram growing in a smart direction.
“I have owned a business for the past 21 years and happily employ 4 Ancram residents!
“Growing up on a dairy farm taught me the importance of working together to accomplish common goals and to respect the land.
“From my family I witnessed the value of Public Service watching many members proudly serve, as I have, numerous committees and Boards .
“If elected I would be honored listen to and serve ALL of the Ancram community.”
Ms. Israel, 76, is finishing up her second four-year term on the Town Board. She seeks re-election to a third. She is a registered Democrat endorsed by her party.
Born in Brooklyn, she holds a BA in American literature.
She is retired from Camphill Village after 17 years. For 15 of those years she was development officer. She began her working life as a junior high school teacher and was a technical trainer in a stock trading organization.
She serves on the Climate Smart Community Task Force and the Senior Advisory Council of Columbia County Office for the Aging. She was married to Paul Israel, who died in 2003. Her son and daughter are both grown and she is the grandmother of four.
In her issues statement, Ms. Israel said: “I have been on the Ancram Town Council for two terms. During that time we have built a new town garage; provided the Highway Department with some badly needed new equipment; kept town taxes flat; instituted a summer day camp; passed the Comprehensive Plan, and passed a new zoning law, to name a few.
“I hope to have the opportunity to continue to work on behalf of all the residents of Ancram, and to keep Ancram moving on the road to the future.”
Ms. McDermott, 59, is vying for her first four-year term on the Town Board. She is a Republican running with her party’s endorsement.
She was born in Brooklyn and has earned a masters degree plus 21 credits. She is an eighth grade social studies teacher at North End Middle School, Waterbury, CT. She has won the Teacher of the Year award.
She is currently a clerk with the Ancram Building Department and has been since 2002. She was formerly an Ancram court clerk.
For the past 14 years, Ms. McDermott has served as secretary in Ancram Fire Company. She is a member of the Immaculate Conception Church in Amenia and a previous member of the Court Clerks Association.
She is married to Joseph McDermott and is the mother of three grown children and eight grandchildren.
In her statement of issues. Ms. McDermott wrote: “I have enjoyed the beauty of Ancram for over 30 years. We became full time residents in 2001. Immediately I became active in town activities. I began working part time at the Ancram Building Department. In 2002, I joined the Ancram Fire Company. I am ready to take the next step into the workings of our town. I love being a part of Ancram. We need to look to the future. Together we must be informed and educated citizens who will ensure progress while continuing to hold onto the aspects that make our town such a wonderful place to live.”
To contact Diane Valden email