Names of candidates appear in alphabetical order

Athens town council

Name: Mary Brandow

Current elected office: Councilwoman, Athens town board, seeking third term

Party line on the ballot: Republican

Previous elected office: None

What accomplishments are you most proud of?

In my present term we have hired a new town attorney, a new CPA firm that is working with our new bookkeeper bringing a revitalized sense of financial integrity to our books and records. We hired a new town assessor and an assessor’s clerk who have reviewed the files for all properties and we are currently examining the benefits of systematic evaluation instead of a full revaluation, thereby leveling the imbalance within various properties within a class type. The positive results from this effort will be to raise the equalization rate and lower the taxes for anyone who might be overassessed in a particular property class.

What are your goals if reelected to a third term?

I am committed to serving in all aspects of my job and remain open to any measures that improve communication and increase economy and efficiency in all departments. I will bring a continued sense of enthusiasm working with all members of the town board for the purpose of continuing the forward momentum that we have started and are driven to complete.

Athens town council

Name: Phyllis Dinkelacker

Age: 62

Family: Husband Mark, son Shane, his wife Alana and granddaughters Amylee and Madison.

How long you’ve lived in the county: 28 years

Previous residence: Rotterdam

Occupation: Central Office, Payroll for Department of Corrections and Community Supervision

Party affiliation: Democrat

Previous elected offices: Athens Town Council, 2010-2013

High school: Mont Pleasant High School

College: Schenectady County Community College

Military service: None

What do you think is the top issue facing your community? What would you do to address this issue if elected?

I’ve worked for New York state for 41 years and we have been tasked to do more with less. I don’t see much difference with local government. I’d like to look into shared services. Not only between the town and village, but other towns, counties and state.

Athens town council

Name: Cari Gardner

Age: 76

Family: Husband Donald, 76; daughters Cori Gardner, 48, and Evan Gardner, 35.

How long you’ve lived in the county: Four years

Occupation: Retired speech teacher; advertising executive; business manager; yoga teacher.

Party line on ballot: Democrat

Previous elected offices: None

College: Masters, speech pathology/audiology, New York University

Military service: None

What do you think is the top issue facing your community? What would you do to address this issue if elected?

My sense is that many in the town of Athens feel disenfranchised. There needs to be a real effort at making this town much more responsive and transparent. One cannot hold public office to advance one’s own personal agenda. Legislation shouldn’t happen because your friend, neighbor or family wants something. It is incumbent upon electeds to seek to serve the greater good and not to be in it for personal gain.

Why do you think you will be a good councilwoman?

I care about people. I care about nature. I’m willing to listen to all sides of issues, gather all essential information, weigh all aspects in order to make informed decisions. I’m a dedicated and hard worker with a high degree of integrity. What are you most proud of accomplishing if you hold office? If you are a newcomer, what are you looking forward to accomplishing if elected? I would very much like to help establish some really meaningful legislation to

improve land use while protecting trees, wetlands and wildlife. There’s a lot of room for growth in Athens. Athens is blessed with a bounty of farmland that has been nurtured by families for generations. As a community we need to balance that resource while seeking sustainable measures to deal with future climate issues. And, I will pursue ways to better integrate the more rural reaches of the town with the village and lake portions of the community.

Athens town council

Name: Tony Paluch

Occupation: Owns small farm in Athens, retired from the railroad after 34 years as a welder

How long have you lived in Greene County: A resident for most of his life

Current elected office: Councilman, Athens town board

Previous elected office: None

Background and experience: Paluch is an active member of several board in Athens and Greene County. This includes having served for eight years as a member of the Town of Athens Planning Board. He continues to represent the town of Athens as a member of the Greene County Planning Board. He is an active member of the West Athens-Limestreet Fire Company and is a long-term fire commissioner of the West Athens-Limestreet Fire District.

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