|Posted on June 17, 2017 at 11:15 PM|
FOR RELEASE June 17, 2017
Media Contact: Joshua Steele Kelly, [email protected]
Waterford Green Party Nominates Candidates for 2017 Municipal Election, Expects More
Waterford, CT- The Waterford Green Party Town Committee held its first official nominating convention for the 2017 municipal elections at 3:00pm on Saturday, June 17, at the Waterford Public Library. After discussion of the merits, experience, and political ideology of each candidate, the town Greens decided to formally endorse five individual candidates that will now appear on the ballot in November. Candidates endorsed include Kevin Kelly for Board of Finance, Billy Gene Collins for Zoning Board of Appeals, Baird Welch-Collins for Representative Town Meeting (RTM) District 2, Joshua Steele Kelly for RTM District 3, and Carl D’Amato for RTM District 4. Three other candidates that could not attend today’s meeting were nominated from the floor, and the votes to formally endorse those candidates will be cast at the Party’s second and final nominating convention in July.
The Waterford Green Party has seen increased participation in the party since they won their first seat in the town government in the 2015 election, and they have since gained two more seats on town boards and commissions and had two members become Justices of the Peace. This surge in party and governmental involvement is also reflected in the increased number of candidates running for office on the Green line in 2017. The party is already close to running at least one candidate for each position up for election this November, and will accept more nominations at their convention in July.
Two of the candidates for RTM, Baird Welch-Collins and Joshua Kelly, are co-founders of the town’s Green Party and already have experience serving on town boards and commissions. Joshua Kelly won a seat as an alternate on the Zoning Board of Appeals in 2015, and has since been appointed as an alternate to the Conservation Commission. He graduated from Wheaton College (MA) this past May with a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science, and is now enrolled at the University of Connecticut to earn his Masters in Public Administration. Baird Welch-Collins is finishing his undergraduate degree at Connecticut College this year, studying Government, and sits as a member of the town’s Flood and Erosion Control Board. He ran for RTM back in 2015 as well, and came within 150 votes of winning a seat. Kevin Kelly, heading the ticket this November, is currently an administrator at Mitchell College in New London, and has been extremely active in town activities since establishing residency over 15 years ago. He also earned over 1,200 votes as a Green in a highly contested Board of Education race in 2015, an impressive electoral accomplishment for the then-fledgling town Green Party. Dr. Bill Collins has run for office twice in the past: once for State Representative for District 38 in 2013, and again for Board of Selectmen in 2015. Dr. Collins has been a long-time member of the community, teaching at both Waterford High School and the Community College of Rhode Island for years. Last but not least, Carl D’Amato, a teacher in the Montville Public Schools system, is a newcomer to the Green Party and to electoral politics, and represents the reinvigorated support the party has garnered in the past two years.
Candidates endorsed by the town Green Party will be meeting within the next few weeks to formalize their platform. Each is very excited to engage in substantive dialogue with residents throughout the campaigning season and, most importantly, to continue that dialogue and to serve the public effectively throughout their terms in office.