The Redding DTC supports
the following candidates running
for election on November 5, 2019
The Contested Races for Democrats against Republicans are:
*Region 9 Board of Education
*Redding Board of Education
*Board of Assessment Appeals
Region 9 Board of Education: (contested race)
Mike D’Agostino, running for re-election to the Region 9 Board of Education, has lived in Redding for 30 years and has served our school community as a volunteer since 2006 and as an elected Board member since 2011: Region 9 Board of Education member 2013-present (Chair 2017-present); Redding Board of Education member (Secretary); Redding Facilities Planning Committee (Chair 2010-present); Redding and Region 9 Calendar Committee; Region 9 Policy Committee; Region 9 Facilities and Fields Committee (Chair 2013-2017). Mike’s extensive collaboration with school administration and his supervision of outside contractors has resulted in the successful completion of the necessary capital improvements at Redding Elementary School and John Read Middle School.
He is the current Chair of the Region 9 Board and was instrumental in closing the construction audit for the Barlow Building Project without further financial exposure to the towns. Under Mike’s leadership, the District has continued to increase educational opportunities for students while finding efficiencies to reduce costs as the student population declines. Mike also lends his attention to detail and project management expertise to ongoing facilities and fields work at Joel Barlow High School. He and his family consider themselves fortunate to live in a town with wonderful, engaged residents, natural beauty, and exceptional schools, and he looks forward to continuing the important stewardship of Region 9 as it persists in its mission of providing educational excellence.
Mary Lee Pampel
Mary Lee Pampel is an outdoor educator and the membership coordinator at New Pond Farm Education Center. Previously, she served as a middle school social studies teacher in the New Rochelle, New York public school system. Mary Lee has a Bachelors Degree in Russian Studies from the University of Virginia and a Masters Degree in the Teaching of Secondary Social Studies from Columbia University’s Teachers College.
A former PTA co-president and Board of Education liaison at Redding Elementary School, Mary Lee has worked on various committees at the elementary, middle and high school levels. She currently serves as Program Chair for the Redding Democratic Town Committee.
Mary Lee and her husband moved to Redding with their two daughters because they fell in love with the rural setting and friendly feeling of the town. Feeling fortunate to live in Redding, Mary Lee promises to do her very best to represent the interests of all town citizens. She realizes that all Redding residents have a vested interest in an educational system that prepares Redding’s children to be productive citizens while still being affordable for residents to remain here into their retirement.
Mary Lee would like to serve on the Region 9 Board of Education to support continued excellent educational practices at Joel Barlow High School. Mary Lee believes that the quality and compassion of the teachers, administrators and staff at Barlow are a tremendous asset to the town.
Redding Board of Education: (contested race)
Chris has served on the Redding Board of Education since 2017. He is the Board Secretary, the Board’s lead negotiator in negotiations with the district’s four unions, and sits on the transportation, long range planning, structure and ways of working, policy, and central office committees. Chris believes strongly in the value of public education and looks forward to continuing the Board’s ongoing work to improve communication, be proactive about planning for the future of education, and continuously improve both the Board’s operation and the quality of the Redding school district.
Chris moved to Redding in 2009 and lives with his wife and three children (two at JRMS and one at RES). In addition to his work on the Board, Chris can be found following his kids’ sports teams, at St. Patrick Church, and as a scout leader. He is currently the Committee Chairman for Cub Scout Pack 118, a position he has held for six of the past seven years.
Professionally, Chris is the Vice President of Litigation for The Chefs’ Warehouse, Inc., an international food distribution company. He holds a bachelors degree from Cornell University in Policy Analysis and Management and a law degree from the University of Connecticut. For more information, visit Chris’ Facebook page.
Stephanie was born in Redding, lived at beautiful New Pond Farm, and was raised in Georgetown and Wilton. She decided to move back to Redding in 2005 because she knew it was the best school system in the area for her 2 children. Stephanie’s daughters both attended Redding Elementary and John Read Middle School, where Stephanie was an active volunteer. Stephanie’s daughters attend Joel Barlow High School where Grace is a Senior and Izzy is a Sophomore.
Professionally, Stephanie’s career has included positions in Fairfield County, beginning with the American Institute for Foreign Study in Greenwich for which she ran a summer au pair program, and at John W. Henry & Co in Westport, a current owner of the Boston Red Sox. Stephanie is employed at ASML in Wilton where she serves as Executive Assistant to the ASML Vice President.
Stephanie has a unique understanding of the community as a long-time resident who attended the public schools, along with her volunteer service to many of the town’s vibrant institutions:
- Mark Twain Library, Redding (since 2008) – event planning and fund raising for both the Art Show and the Frog Frolic;
- Boys & Girls Club, Redding/Easton (since 2015) – community service, event planning and fundraising (since 2015); Torch Club mentor; photographer for fundraising events.
- Redding Historical Society (since 2018) Annual Rock-n-Roots Festival – Pie Contest (2018 to present)
Stephanie’s reasons for wanting to serve on the board of education are straightforward: She’d like to participate in shaping the future of Redding’s schools for the next generation of learners while maintaining their excellence, and continue to give back to the community that has served her family so well.
First Selectman: (Dem – cross endorsement)
Julia currently serves as First Selectman and is running for re-election. Learn more about Julia’s work and accomplishments for Redding on the elected officials page.
Selectman: Peg O’Donnell
Peg has been on the Board of Selectmen since 2016 and is running for re-election. Prior to that, she held elected positions in Redding since 2001, including town treasurer and member of the Board of Finance.
After 8 years in public accounting, Peg founded Topstone Financial Consultants in 1989, which specializes in business, trust and estate taxation and accounting for individual clients.
Peg served as a Trustee of The Mark Twain Library Association for 7 years, holding several positions, including treasurer, vice president and president. She also served on the board of the New Pond Farm Foundation for 8 years. Peg volunteered as treasurer for Cub Scouts, on the Board of the League of Women Voters, RES PTA and Redding Neighbors and Newcomers.
Peg is a lifelong CT resident, born in Somers, CT. She is married with 3 children, who all attended and graduated from Redding schools. Peg’s husband, Scott, has a background in banking and financial planning and is an advisor and trustee working for individuals in Fairfield County. Peg and her family have lived in Redding since February 1993.
Additional information can be found on the elected officials page.
Town Clerk: (Dem – cross endorsement)
Michele currently serves as Town Clerk and is running for re-election. Her bio can be found on the elected officials page.
Treasurer: (U – cross endorsement)
Wes currently serves as Treasurer and is running for re-election. His bio can be found on the elected officials page.
(Rep – cross endorsement)
Board of Finance:
Dr. Yonkers is running for re-election to the Board of Finance. She has been active in the Redding Community over the past 20 years. She served on the Board of Temple B’Nai Chaim and then on its Executive Committee. She joined the Democratic Town Committee in 2008 and continues to be active in the Committee. She has been an elected member of the Board of Finance since 2010 and served as Chair during the previous year.
Dr. Yonkers appreciates the wonderful schools in Redding that provided an excellent education for her three children. She and her family find that Redding is well situated for their interests in activities as diverse as skiing, hiking, gardening and the theater in New York.
In her professional life, Dr. Yonkers is a Professor in the Department of Psychiatry (Primary), Obstetrics, Gynecology and Reproductive Sciences, and the School of Epidemiology and Public Health at the Yale School of Medicine. She is Director of the Center for the Wellbeing of Women and Mothers, Director of Research for the Yale New Haven Hospital Division in the Department of Psychiatry and Division Director of the Psychological Medicine Service. Dr. Yonkers is a nationally recognized expert in the diagnosis and treatment of mood, anxiety, and substance use disorders associated with the reproductive health of women. She is author of over 150 publications.
Board of Assessment Appeals: (contested race)
Karen’s goal as an elected member of the Board of Assessment Appeals would be to assure that assessments are based on accurate information, and are equitable as compared with similar buildings, land, and location. She brings decades of financial experience and an understanding of the Redding community to the task.
Karen retired as a Managing Director in Public Finance at Merrill Lynch, and has also worked in corporate and healthcare finance.
Having lived in Redding since 1982, first as a weekender and more recently as a permanent resident, she was delighted to be invited to serve on the Mark Twain Library Board of Trustees because she views it as an important community and cultural resource for all Redding residents. Karen has served as Treasurer and Chair of the Finance and Investment Committees, and also volunteers for its Book Fair.
As a member of the Redding Land Trust, Karen has volunteered regularly to support their fundraisers and educational outreach efforts; and for a New Pond Farm fundraiser, prepared a Moroccan dinner for 30 (with help from friends!).
She is a Trustee emerita and former Treasurer of the Kingswood-Oxford School. During her 12 years of active service she was a member of the search committee for a new head of school who was faced with rightsizing the student body and bringing the campus up to current standards. He accomplished all that and more and went on to lead one of New York City’s leading independent schools. I have also served on the Boards of the Community Service Society and the Alliance for the Arts.
Karen says “I am fortunate to live in Redding, and it would be a privilege to serve on the Board of Assessment Appeals.”
Planning Commission: (contested race)
Regina O’Brien has served on the Redding Planning Commission since 2013. She is a landscape architect based in Redding. Her firm focuses on residential work throughout Connecticut and New York State, with a particular passion for creating plans based on a comprehensive understanding of the landscape and the natural processes intrinsic to a site’s forms and ecosystem. Regina’s extensive knowledge of landscape construction best practices, horticulture, and cultural history inform and benefit her work with the Planning Commission.
As a Planning Commission member, she is committed to seeking a balance between responsible development of the land and a profound respect for a site’s natural features and processes. In evaluating large and small projects that come before the Planning Commission, Regina strives for positive solutions that are in keeping with the cultural history and natural landscape of Redding as a whole.
Regina lives in Redding with her husband David Heald, having moved here from New York City in 1994. They raised two children in Redding, who were educated in the public schools and nurtured by many hours spent outdoors in the open spaces throughout the town.
Dan is a professor of psychology, having lived in Redding with his wife, Environmental Attorney Pam Elkow, since 2007. He is currently an alternate on the Planning Commission, a former member and Chair of the Redding Board of Ethics, and a former alternate on the Redding Zoning Board of Appeals. Dan also sits on the Board of the Redding League of Women Voters.
The top issue facing the Planning Commission is the implementation and monitoring of the new Redding Plan of Conservation and Development. The plan provides the overarching vision for the Town of Redding and encompasses many goals, including conservation of open space and thoughtful residential and business development.
Many other issues fall within the umbrella of the town plan. Perhaps the most crucial will be the development of the Georgetown wire mill site. The First Selectman has been making steady progress toward a reasonable resolution, and the Planning Commission will have a key role in the planning and development of that site. We need to ensure—to the extent possible—that the development is consistent with the character of our town while also enhancing both our financial base (via tax revenues) and the diversity of our residential offerings (such as affordable, multi-family housing).
Dan’s bio can also be found on the elected officials page.
Zoning Board: (contested race)
Paul Scholl is running for a second full term on the Zoning Commission. Previously he was an alternate and then a regular member of the Zoning Board of Appeals.
William Whitehead, Jr.
Bill Whitehead is a lifelong Redding resident (since 1965 when his family moved to Redding). This experience has helped shape Bill’s desire to work to preserve the town’s unique rural character and open spaces that Redding residents see all around them when drive down our town’s beautiful scenic roads. You’ll often hear Bill describe that driving around Redding in 2019, looks virtually as its roads looked in 1969 and there’s a reason for that; the town has fought tirelessly to control its growth and done so very effectively; this stands in stark contrast to so many of it surrounding towns that have become overgrown, peppered with with unsightly McMansions and over-development. Redding is the jewel in the crown of Fairfield County, steeped in a rich history of conservation thanks to the folks like Mary Ann Guitar and countless others and Bill would like to play his own humble role in continuing this tradition!!
Bill lives in Redding with his long-time partner and their four dogs, two Jack Russells and 2 Rescue Chiweenies, Betty and Louise!
Bill is a realtor with Vincent & Whittemore Real Estate in Bedford, New York. He’s licensed in Connecticut and New York and specializes Full Real Estate service in Fairfield County for Vincent and Whittemore.
Zoning Board of Appeals:
Beth currently serves as chair of the Zoning Board of Appeals and is running for re-election.
Mary Ann Carman