Village caucuses nominate local candidates

Jamie Swinnerton
Tompkins Weekly


As of Thursday, Feb. 1, was the last day to file a certificate of party nomination to the Tompkins County Board of Elections for candidates running in a village election. Party caucuses held in Trumansburg, Dryden and Groton have resulted in the following nominations. Candiates who could be reaches were asked why they are running for a position in local government.


Rordan Hart

Rordan Hart has been nominated by both the local Republican and Democratic parties for mayor of Trumansburg.
“I’m running for Mayor because, above everything else, Trumansburg is my home and I feel deeply and personally invested in its future.  In my 11 years on the Village Board, I have come to realize just how uniquely positioned Trumansburg is – geographically, culturally, and as a provider of services in the region.  As the demand for these services continues to grow, the demands on Village administration to properly manage these services will also grow.  I feel a strong sense of responsibility to make every effort to manage this bright but uncertain future for the benefit of the residents of the Village of Trumansburg.”




Benjamin Carver

Ben Carver has been nominated by the local Democratic party for village trustee of Trumansburg.
“I am running for another term as Trustee for a number of fairly straight forward reasons. The most basic of which is that I enjoy serving the community that I grew up in. In particular, as EMS and Youth Commissioner there are a number of ongoing projects that I am excited to continue working on. More generally, I believe that in contentious political environments like the one in T-Burg right now it is more important than ever to have representatives who will put the interests of the Village before their own agendas. As a Trustee there are innumerable issues, meetings, and competing agendas to approach on a daily basis and I believe that my track record shows that I can and will address all of those in a level headed and forward thinking manner. I look forward to representing and serving the residents of our wonderful little Village for another four years.”



Ben Darfler has been nominated by the local Democratic party for village trustee of Trumansburg.
“I am running for village trustee for two reasons. First and foremost I want to see improved communication and transparency in our local government. In my role as a lead software engineer at work, I spend much of my day focused on effective digital communication, and I have experience managing websites and social media accounts. I have been posting videos and notes online from the village board meetings, and I promise that as a Village Trustee, I will grow and expand that outreach and transparency. Second, I want to ensure that Trumansburg continues to flourish for generations to come. Long-term residents tell me that the village has rarely been this vibrant and I want to make sure it stays this way. We have a lot of expenses on our balance sheet, from the water and sewer expansion to the rising cost of health care for our municipal employees, and we all feel it in our tax bills. If we want to continue to flourish as a village, we need to keep our budget in check by responsibly growing our property and sales tax base. I have taken this fiscally minded approach to my work on the zoning revision committee, and I will bring it to my role as Village Trustee.”

Ed Errigo has been nominated by the local Republican party for village trustee of Trumansburg.


Mike Murphy has been nominated by the local Democratic party for Mayor of Dryden.
“Dryden Village is a great place to live and raise a family. My goal is to continue to make it a great place to live and raise a family. My six years as a trustee have increased my knowledge and understanding of how the Village works. A prior board under Randy Sterling accepted the premise that New York State would not grant Dryden Village permission to place wells on state land at Dryden Lake Park. That turned out not to be true: the state did give us permission to put our two wells at Dryden Lake Park. The smaller of those wells has twice the capacity of our present highest producing well, and the water is almost arsenic-free. I thank Mayor Zimmer for thinking outside the box and Mayor Taylor for using her contacts to make for a better water project—and I thank both for educating me on how to be an effective leader.

I am the type of person who takes his position as Trustee very seriously, and I am willing to do the research and hard work of seeking the best solutions. I want to be sure all alternative solutions are fully investigated and that we select the best solution, not just the most convenient solution. This requires talking to and consulting with Village employees, Village residents, and experts in the search for the solution that maximizes the results from citizens’ tax dollars.

I plan to bring that attitude and work ethic to the position of Mayor. I believe we can make the Village a better, more affordable place to live by growing the tax base with appropriate businesses to fill the vacant lots on Route 13 and by building appropriate housing elsewhere in the Village. Now that I am retired, I have time to get deeply involved in the many details required for a smoothly-run Village that is responsive to the needs of the citizens and mindful that the money they use to pay taxes is hard-earned and sometime fix.”


Debbie Fisher has been nominated by the local Democratic party for village trustee of Dryden.
“I wanted to run for a position on the Dryden Village Board because I care deeply about Dryden and that at the most local level, I can make the most difference.  Local government can have great impact on our daily lives, and our neighbors and community, and I want to be able to contribute to that.”







Jason Dickinson has been nominated by the local Democratic party for village trustee of Dryden.
“Why I am running for village trustee?  I would like to help the village to keep services and build a stronger community by focused planning.  I am excited about aesthetic changes and new safety devices.  I hope to put more charm in the village without relying on taxpayers.”







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Randy Sterling

Randy Sterling has been nominated by the local Republican party for Mayor in Dryden.
“Becuase I’ve lived here for 40 years, I’m interested in local government, and I need something to do. I’ve been a patrolman here and I care about this village. Quite frankly, it’s a great place to live and we want to continue that.”










Kayla Lane-Clark

Kayla Lane-Clark has been nominated by the local Republican party for village trustee in Dryden.
“I decided to run for Village Board Trustee because I am a young, local professional who lives and works in the Village of Dryden. I would like to do my part as a community member, a tax payer, and a resident to ensure the village continues to be a safe and happy place for all who live here. I am in this for the long-term, and want to promote stability for the community.”







Dan Wakeman has been nominated by the local Republican party for village trustee in Dryden.


Jean Morey

Jean Morey for has been nominated by the local Republican party for village trustee in Groton.
“It is an honor to be a village trustee. My husband and I have been active in Groton and local area programs for most of the 37 years we have lived here. For me, these include the Groton Public Library, Groton Elementary School, Groton Community Preschool, Groton Community Church, Groton Rotary Club, Groton Community Council, Groton Republican Committee, and the Village of Groton.  I was also involved for 25 years in the local Cystic Fibrosis chapter.  This gives me a sense of ownership in the village/community, and makes me want to ensure it is a safe haven for all who live here.

I take every item that is presented to the Groton Village Board of Trustees seriously. Though not every item can be responded to on the spot, it is discussed by the board and in some instances will need to be brought before our legal counsel.  As a representative of the village, I want to be sure we give the correct response for all involved.  For me, this has been a great learning experience and is a chance to understand just what the village is about and what the village employees endure during their daily regimen to support the Groton residents.

Groton has an exciting time ahead working on plans for a new fire station and building to be used by the community.
I am running for re-election as Village of Groton Trustee because I want to see Groton continue to grow. Groton is a great place to live, to raise a family and to retire. I am proud to say I live in Groton.”


Terrance Walpole has been nominated by the local Republican party for village trustee in Groton.
“Why am I running for a position in local government? At the risk of sounding simplistic, because I love the Groton community. My ancestors settled here generations ago.  I grew up in Groton and have lived most of my adult life here. Through the years my family and I have been blessed. In countless ways by our neighbors and friends. I have been a Special Education teacher, working with At Risk Youth for the past twenty years. I have a BRE from Davis College and a MA (major in Education Special Education) from Ball State. I have served on the Board of Directors of the Groton Golf & Recreation Association for the past eight years and am presently its President. Being soon to retire, I will have the time to invest my education and life experiences toward helping to further improve the already rich qualities of our community. I feel that our present and recent mayors and the Board have done an outstanding job of planning and programing for both the present and future needs of our home town. If elected, I look forward to becoming part of that village team.”