Meet your Candidates!
Tom O’Brien for Mayor
Tom has lived in New Milford for over 20 years with his wife, Cece, and son, Jake.He owns his own small carpentry business and is also a journalist. Tom has a BA, History from S.U.N.Y. College at Oswego. Tom graduated summa cum laude in 1989. Tom currently serves the town as the Chair of its Bike and Trail Committee, and its representative on the Board of Directors for HART Transit. He previously served on the Zoning Commission. His non-profit commitments include long-time service on the boards of the Trust for Historic Preservation and the New Milford River Trail Association, which he co-founded.
Mary Jane LundGren - Town Council
Mary Jane, longtime resident, had a 45 year career as a nurse in New Milford Hospital’s Intensive Care Unit. She has served on the Town Council, and is an active volunteer and member of the Aging Commission, Affordable Housing Inc., and New Milford Substance Abuse Committee. Mary Jane is Vice President of the Northville Residents Association. She earned a BA from Western Connecticut State University, MSW from UCONN School of Social Work and her nursing degree from Roosevelt Hospital School of Nursing.
Dr. Peter Mullen - Town Council
Peter graduated from the New York University College of Dentistry in 1982, and has been a partner at Mullen Family Dentistry in New Milford for 35 years. He served on Town Council for several years beginning in 2005. Before that Peter served over 12 years on our Parks & Recreation Commission.
Walter Bayer - Town Council
Walter has lived in New Milford for 46 years. He is currently a member of the Town Council, and was past Chairman and member of Zoning Board of Appeals. Walter retired from teaching social studies after 38 years. He has volunteered for Housing Partnership, and the New Milford Historical Society. As a Veteran, he is a member of American Legion Post 60. Walter served in the United States Army from 1960 to 1963. He has BS from Southern Connecticut State College, a MA from Fairfield University as well as a Certificate of Advanced Study (CAS) from Fairfield.
Dr. Michele Shackelford - Town Council
Michele spent 35 years as a child psychologist and neuropsychologist in NYC. She directed the Center for Attention and Learning Disorders at Lenox Hill Hospital. She served on the Board of Directors for the Promise Project. She and her husband, Norman Adler, bought a house in New Milford in 2000 and became full-time residents five years ago. Since that time, she has served on the Ethics Commission and has worked with the New Milford Refugee Relocation organization to help integrate refugees and asylum-seekers into the New Milford Community. Michele holds a Ph.D.
Jeffrey Winter - Town Council
Jeff is a 20 year resident of New Milford. He served on the Board of Assessment Appeals, Vice Chairman of the Economic Development Commission, and Vice Chairman of the Community Center Committee. Jeff is a long-time community volunteer, coaching and managing youth sports for New Milford Youth Baseball, Soccer Club of New Milford and both boys and girls basketball and soccer for Parks and Recreation. Jeff graduated from the University of Minnesota with BS, Marketing and History, and works for Union Savings Bank. He and his wife Debbie raised three children here who attended K-12 in New Milford.
David Lawson - Town Council
David is currently the Chairman of the Board of Education. He was a teacher for more than thirty years, and is a member of the Sons of the American Revolution and the B-29 Wings of the Marianas. David received his BA and BEd from Queen’s University, Kingston, Ontario, and his MS from SUNY Potsdam. Dave and his family are long-time New Milford residents. David is running for Town Council to preserve and grow upon New Milford’s outstanding location and quality of life. He would like the town to be as attractive to future generations as it is to the present citizens.
Hilary Ram - Town Council
Hilary is running for New Milford Town Council. She was born in Puerto Rico and grew up in New York City. She graduated from St. Lawrence University with a BA, Political Science. Hilary and her family settled in New Milford 3 years ago. She is committed to New Milford’s wellbeing and growth. Much of her energy will be working to attract new and growing businesses. Her other areas of focus: prioritizing education; environment; building stronger community ties; nurturing inclusivity and volunteerism; and listening to the residents of New Milford.
Gale Alexander - Town Council
Gale, his wife and two children have been New Milford residents for over thirty years. Gale has served our town in the past as Chairman of the Board of Finance, member of the Arts Commission, and currently as Justice of the Peace. He is the owner of Rabbat Productions, an event contracting company, professional magician and hypnotist, and a Connecticut certified teacher.
Megan Byrd - Town Council
Megan, a New Milford resident for nearly 15 years, has spent the past 5 years serving as PTO president, and fundraising chair at Hill and Plain School and Sarah Noble School. Megan also began a grass roots movement in town to help increase understanding of what is in our school budgets as well as increase support of our schools. She holds a BS, Psychology with a minor in Special Studies in Special Education from Central Connecticut State University and a MS, Research Measurement and Quantitative Analysis from Southern Connecticut State University. Megan shares her life with her husband, Chris and 10 year-old twins, Heather and Aaron.
David Gronbach - Board of Finance
Dave was Mayor of New Milford from 2015-2017. Dave was born and raised in New Rochelle, NY, and graduated from S.U.N.Y. Albany. He obtained his Juris Doctorate from Pace University School of Law. Prior to becoming Mayor of New Milford in 2015, he and his wife Vanessa owned their own law firm and local bookstore here. While Mayor, Dave instituted reforms to emphasize professionalism and fairness. His term showed that with strong leadership, Government could accomplish great things.
Barbara M. Wolf – Board of Finance
Barbara has been a New Milford resident since 1986. She was elected to the Board of Finance in 2013 and has served for 6 years. Barbara has been on the recycling subcommitte for over 5 years and has served as the committee’s secretary for the past 2 years. She is past member of Village Fair Days and Picnic Committees, 2007 Tricentennial Committee, and co-chair of “300 Years of New England Desserts. She is a member of St. Francis Xavier Parish. Barbara graduated from the State University of New York at Canton and attended Western Connecticut State University in Danbury, CT.
Korey Linder – Board of Finance
Korey has lived in New Milford nearly nine years and runs a small business in town, Touch of Color Painting. Prior to that he worked for Sherwin Williams for ten years. He has an economics and finance background from the University of Scranton. Korey has been serving on the Board of Finance for many years protecting New Milford’s citizens money!
Amy Photopoulos - Board of Finance
A professional with more than fifteen years of agency experience, Amy has excellent business acumen and experience with setting and managing budgets. After graduating from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill with a BA, Journalism, Amy spent 7 years at MMC, a New York City based agency where she managed P&G business. Amy was Sr. VP at DeVries Global for 8 years. Amy has called New Milford home for 12 years. Amy is passionate about giving back and wants to help ensure the town makes good choices when it comes to budgets and spending. Amy lives with her husband Tim and her children Adrian and Nick.
Dr. Michele Stawasz – Board of Education
Michele moved to New Milford in 2002, being attracted by its small town New England character and the great reputation of its public schools. She worked for 15 years as a scientist at ATMI, a semiconductor materials company in Danbury. She received her BA, Chemistry from the College of the Holy Cross, and her Ph.D., Analytical Chemistry from Colorado State University. Michele has enjoyed volunteering for school activities at Hill and Plain School as well as Sarah Noble, and has also served as an assistant coach for New Milford Youth Baseball in the Rookies and Minors leagues.
Roseann Petruso – Board of Education
Roseann and her family have lived in New Milford for 12 years. Roseann has been an educator for 15 years, and is presently a literacy teacher and instructional coach in a nearby town. She is also involved in the community as a volunteer for Regional Hospice of Western CT. Roseann has a BS, Business Administration in Finance and a MS, Reading, both from Western CT State University. In addition, she earned her administrator and supervision certification after studying Educational Leadership at Sacred Heart University. Prior to becoming an educator she was a financial analyst with IBM.
Marilyn Lipscomb, Board of Education
A lifelong educator, Marilyn has dedicated more than 20 years to public school students. Since graduating from the University of Maryland, she has taught high school French & English in Maryland and Alabama. Marilyn sponsored several clubs including Yearbook, was a Booster Club President, and most recently, Debate Coach at Wilton High School. A mother of two Connecticut public school graduates, including a special needs son, she has a unique insight in understanding interactions of students, faculty and community. Marilyn has lived in New Milford for 5 years with her husband of 45 years.
Brian McCauley - Board of Education
Brian is a current member of the Board of Education. Brian lives in New Milford with his wife Miyako and daughter Juliea. Brian has been a social studies teacher and special education teacher for over 10 years. Brian graduated from the College of Wooster with a BA, and from Mercy College with a Masters degree in education.
Tammy McInerney - BOArd of Education
A New Milford resident for 17 years, Tammy spent nearly two decades working for Western Connecticut State University, most recently as Director of Alumni Relations. She graduated from WCSU with a bachelor’s degree in English. Tammy has been active in the New Milford PTOs since 2007 and currently serves as the Schaghticoke Middle School PTO President. She was first elected to the Board of Education in 2015 and, in her tenure, has served as vice chair, policy chair, Committee on Learning chair, secretary and assistant secretary.
Gerard J. Monaghan – Planning Commission
Gerry has been a New Milford resident since 1973. He is a current member of the Planning Commission member and served as Chairman for five years. Gerry is active at St. Francis Xavier Church, serving on the Parish Pastoral Council as a lector and a Eucharistic Minister. He also moderates the library’s military history book club. Gerry is co-founder and retired president of the Association of Bridal Consultants, an international professional association. In his long career, he taught design, worked in marketing and public relations, and served in the military during the first Gulf War. He has a BS, Journalism and a MS, Political Science.
Christopher Ludwig – Planning Commission
Chris moved to New Milford 8 years ago after having spent most of his life in Danbury. Chris is self-employed in the music and computer technology field. He is seeking election to the Planning Commission. Chris would like to see pedestrian safety in the downtown district addressed, and especially for senior citizens and those with disabilities who would benefit from improvements to sidewalks. Chris loves the small-town charm and natural beauty of New Milford and wants to see the direction of the town’s planning and growth progress in a safe, fair, and sustainable direction for everyone.
Irene Skrybailo – Zoning Commission
Irene has seen New Milford grow and expand over the nearly 20 years that she has lived in town. She currently serves on the Inland Wetlands, and Aquifer Protection commissions. She is also a member of the Bike & Trail committee. Irene received her MBA from Fordham University. Her background is in the financial industry as an IT professional, and she currently works as a landscaper in a historic garden in Bridgewater.
Christopher Green - Zoning Commission
Chris has his own carpentry business here in New Milford where he has lived for almost 20 years. He previously lived in Virginia where he graduated from Virginia Commonwealth University in 1985. He began working with Restoration Builders of Virginia doing mainly historic work, and started his own business in 1990. Chris also has worked as an editor/photographer with Fine Homebuilding Magazine. Chris lives in New Milford with his wife Dawn and 3 children.
Joe Baker – Zoning Commission
Joe has lived in New Milford for over 30 years. Joe attended Rensselaer Polytech where he earned BS & MS, Mechanical Engineering. He became Director of Engineering at a firm in Brookfield. He later earned an MBA from UCONN. He and a partner started their own business in the semiconductor industry and success allowed Joe to retire early. He now devotes his skills to volunteering and promoting worthy causes in our town.
Pat Hembrook – Zoning Board of Appeals
Pat has lived in New Milford for 34 years. She’s been an active volunteer almost since she arrived here. Her involvement with the Woman’s Club of Greater New Milford extends for 31 years. She has served on many of New Milford’s Boards, and was Executive Director for the Greater New Milford Chamber of Commerce for 7 years, and is a current member of the New Milford Lion’s Club. Pat also serves on the New Milford Youth Agency Board, and is a Trustee of the New Milford Historical Society.
Robert Gambino – Zoning Board of Appeals
Bob is a longtime resident of the Northville section of New Milford and a former Mayor of New Milford from 2001-2003. He is a retired teacher, active in the Northville Residents’ Association. Bob and his wife Kathy have two children who have attended and graduated from our schools. He is currently a Commissioner on the Housatonic River Commission representing New Milford. Bob has a BS from Cornell University.
Jacquelyn Alexander - Zoning Board of Appeals
Jackie has lived in New Milford for 30 years and has seen the challenges presented by a historic village with a mix of old and new buildings. Zoning can help with preserving that mix, and Jackie believes that New Milford’s unique character and charm should be preserved.
Mohammed Karim - Board of Assessment Appeals
Mohammed has been a resident of New Milford since 2005. He is a small business owner, and co-owns a South Asian grocery store in downtown Danbury, as well as managing a convenience store in New Milford. He graduated from the University of Chittagong in Bangladesh with a BS, Commerce. Mohammed lives with his wife and their two daughters who both attend schools in New Milford.
Exiene Lofgren – Board of Assessment Appeals
Exiene is a recent resident of New Milford. He joined the Democratic Town Committee after helping Tom O’Brien’s 2017 campaign run for State Representative. Exiene has 30 years experience working professionally and voluntarily for environmental, LGBT, human rights organizations, as well as local, state, and national Democratic candidates. He is now running for Board of Assessment Appeals.