Jayme Stevenson / Republican candidate for first selectman
With just days to go before the Nov. 8 election, I am sitting at our Post Road campaign headquarters watching people and traffic pass by and reflecting on my campaign for first selectman. Two overwhelming thoughts come to mind.
First, we are so lucky to live in a wonderful town filled with outstanding people -- families, seniors, volunteers, employees and friends. My opponents and I have written and debated on a multitude of timely and important topics like taxes, budgets, affordable housing, flooding, fiscal responsibility, civil discourse and of course, the shuffle.
The Representative Town Meeting voted resoundingly (58-28) to support this great project. Tuesday's vote sends a clear message to our seniors and our entire community that the time has come to invest in a new facility that will serve both our seniors and the greater community, put to use a building that has stood vacant for four years and pave the way for developing much needed senior affordable housing.
Kudos to the RTM for doing their homework, talking to their constituents and affirming our town's commitment to an excellent quality of life for all our residents. The shuffle isn't solely about buildings and money -- it's about people. Our town is a wonderful representation of a "by the people and for the people" system that I am particularly proud to be a part of.
My second thought is about last Saturday's unprecedented and untimely storm. Storm number three, to be exact, since I have been your selectman. Responding to the storm and the needs of our residents has been the top priority for Dave, Jerry and I. Campaigning took an appropriate back seat to managing an immediate and effective storm recovery. The tremendous amount of media coverage would suggest that the shuffle is the campaign issue. However, this storm was a poignant reminder that the job of first selectman is so much more than the shuffle.
It's about leadership. It's about a having a leader who can manage many issues at the same time. A leader who listens to the ideas and concerns of others. A leader who sees a problem and can affect a swift and effective solution. A leader who communicates and collaborates to get things done. A leader who respects the roles and responsibilities of community volunteers and employees.
A leader who understands the intended and unintended consequences of their decisions on people and budgets.
And a leader who puts service to the town before their own self-interests.
I am confident that I will be this kind of a leader for Darien.
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I have spent the past two years listening, learning and doing. I'm ready to serve as your next first selectman and our team is ready to continue the work we've begun. Please vote for me, Dave and Jerry on Nov. 8.