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In largest field since 1993, 13 vie for three boards

Town Election 2012 logo

As the deadline for returning nomination papers has passed, 13 candidates for key town offices are contending for the April 10 town election. Arlington has not seen that many candidates since 1993.

For the Board of Selectmen, five seek the two three-year seats of incumbents who are not running. For School Committee, six candidates are vying for two three-year seats of incumbents who are seeking reelection.

For the Board of Assessors, the incumbent, often unopposed, faces a challenge for the three-year seat.

The last election that this many candidates faced off was 1993, when nine vied for selectmen, eight for School Committee and seven sought two assessor seats.

Selectmen candidates are, in alphabetical order, Steven Byrne, Joseph E. Curran, Joseph A. Curro Jr., Maria Romano and Robert L. Tosi Jr. A. Michael Ruderman took out papers but decided not to run. Incumbents Clarissa Rowe and Annie LaCourt are not running.

School Committee candidates are James J. Flanagan, Ian T. Jackson, Andrew E. O'Brien, A. Matthew Pallett, Cindy Starks and Jeffrey D. Thielman. The last two are incumbents. Gregory D. Brogan and Sean C. Harrington took out papers but decided not to run.

For assessor, Martin Thrope opposes longtime incumbent Kevin P. Feeley.

Housing Authority member Daniel F. Brosnan Jr. faces no opposition in filling a vacancy for a two-year seat that occurred with the death last year of Brian Greeley.

Nomination papers may be challenged before the election, but this does not usually occur in Arlington.

According to a search of town annual reports, which are kept at the clerk's office, the field in 1993 is the last one to have more candidates. A review of election results back to 1979 showed no larger number than this year.

In 1993, the year that voters passed a referendum that eventually led to Arlington's restaurant boom, the town election went this way:

Winners for selectmen were Stephen J. Gilligan, now town treasurer, and Charles Lyons, who served until 2005. Opposing them that year were John M. McKenna and Robert K. Garrity, who received most of the other votes. Also on the ballot were Kenneth MacKenzie, William Rogers, Elizabeth Baldwin, Richard Vincent and Harry Barber.

For School Committee, where there were three seats open at the time, the winners were Barbara Goodman, who served until 2005, and Thrope, who served until 2007, as well as Carolyn Simmons. Others were Paul Schlichtman, Jacqueline Harrington, Douglas J. Delaney, Martha I. Scott and Steven Andrew.

The Board of Assessors had two races that year. For the three-year seat, Maurice H. O'Connell won. Opposing him were Janice A. Weber and Michael Rich. For the two-year seat, to fill a vacancy, James F. Doherty won. Others were John J. McLaughlin III, Donald Reenstierna Jr. and Weber.

For town treasurer, John A. Bilafer beat Bruce A. Wright and Rich.

For town clerk, Ann Mohan Powers swamped the opposition. They were Gerald J. Gagnon, Forrest Buzan and Rich.

2012 Town election information: Town website | YourArlington

This story was first published Wednesday, Feb. 22, 2012, and updated the next day to correct the date of Thrope's service.

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