Town Democrats Offer a Six-Candidate Slate

Republicans pursue a more modest and shy campaign

By Kevin E. Foley

The Philipstown Democrats are planning on a full-ballot press for town offices come this November’s elections.

Ann McGrath-Gallagher

Ann McGrath-Gallagher

The party’s town committee has announced they have candidates for the elected positions of town clerk, Ann McGrath-Gallagher, and town highway superintendent, Carl Frisenda. These two candidates join a previously announced third challenger, Lithgow Osborne, who is running to represent Philipstown (and part of Putnam Valley) in the Putnam County Legislature.

Democratic incumbents Richard Shea, the current town supervisor (and Town Board member), and Town Board Members Nancy Montgomery and Richard Flaherty will join the challenger candidates on the ballot. The Democrats hold all five seats on the Town Board.

New candidates

Frisenda, a lifelong resident of Philipstown, is running for highway superintendent with 34 years of experience as an employee of the Putnam County Highway Department. His experience includes construction equipment operator and construction crew chief. Frisenda has also been active in community affairs, notably Pop Warner football and Little League baseball, having raised two sons with his wife, Denise.

Carl Frisenda

Carl Frisenda

“Carl Frisenda will make an excellent highway superintendent,” said Shea in a statement. “His many years of experience with the Putnam County Highway Department certainly qualify him to address the challenges here in Philipstown. Carl is a great machine operator as well as a skilled manager. I have known Carl for over 30 years and hold him in the highest esteem,” Shea concluded.

Employment as an administrator at corporations such as the Bank of Tokyo and several area schools, as well as 18 years of service as the secretary to the Philipstown Planning Board, form the basis for Gallagher’s qualifications for Town Clerk. A lifelong town resident, she has also served as a volunteer at Haldane while raising three sons with her husband, Ethan.

Gallagher ran for the clerk position once before in 2003, losing to the now three-term incumbent Tina Merando.

“I am thrilled that Ann McGrath Gallagher is running for town clerk,” said Montgomery in a statement. “I’ve personally witnessed her hard work and dedication to our town for so many years. I am so happy that such a faithful citizen is putting her best foot forward to help make our town a better place for all of us.”

Republicans limit outreach

Town Clerk Merando, along with County Legislator Barbara Scuccimarra and Highway Superintendent Roger Chirico, have announced their collective intention to seek re-election, although they have only done so in other local media, notably the Putnam County News and Recorder (PCNR). Merando and Scuccimarra, in particular, have made a practice of holding events and making announcements exclusively in the PCNR for reasons they have not articulated.

The Paper intends to cover all the candidates running for office, as always, with or without their cooperation.

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