Pattye Benson

Community Matters

Alessandra Nicolas

Will 2021 Mark a Sea Change in Local Tredyffrin and Easttown politics?

The 2021 Primary Election is in a few weeks on Tuesday, May 18 but how many know the candidates on the ballot? In the lead up to the primary, campaign signs are dotting the community but for some, the candidate names may be unfamiliar. Locally we are seeing less incumbents seeking reelection.

Tredyffrin Township supervisor Kevin O’Nell (D) and Easttown Township supervisors Marc Heppe (R) and Jim Oram (R) will not seek reelection. The four members of the TE School Board not seeking reelection are Scott Dorsey (I), Tina Whitlow (D), Mary Garrett Itin (D) and Kyle Boyer (D).

With many incumbents not seeking re-election, it means “new” names on the ballot. Over the last several weeks, many of the first-time candidates have reached out and I have had the pleasure to meet and get to know them. My initial reaction to the candidates I met is “wow” and, that our community is lucky to have so many well-qualified residents willing to serve! Thank you!

Below is the list of our local candidates for Tredyffrin and Easttown Townships Board of Supervisors and for the TE School board.

Tredyffrin Township Board of Supervisors

There are three Tredyffrin Township supervisor positions available – two at-large and one in the middle district. Currently serving middle district supervisor Kevin O’Nell (D) has chosen not to seek reelection. At-large supervisors Murph Wysocki (D) and Matt Holt (D) are seeking re-election. Terms are four years.

Two attorneys, three corporate executives and a member of the Army National Guard will vie for Tredyffrin Township’s three available supervisor seats.

For Tredyffrin Township Board of Supervisors, the Tredyffrin Township Democratic Committee has announced the following candidates:

  • Supervisor at Large: Murph Wysocki, Attorney *
  • Supervisor at Large: Matt Holt, Attorney *
  • District 2 (Middle): David Miller, Retired executive, president of Chesterbrook Civic Association

* Incumbent

For Tredyffrin Township Board of Supervisors, the Tredyffrin Township Republican Committee has endorsed the following candidates:

  • Supervisor at Large: Sean Sweeney, Corporate executive
  • Supervisor at Large: Jim Zdancewicz, Business executive
  • District 2 (Middle): Nick Sarracino, member of Army National Guard

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Easttown Township Board of Supervisors

There are two Easttown Township supervisor positions available – currently serving supervisors Marc Heppe (R) and Jim Oram (R) have chosen not to seek re-election. The Supervisors, who are all elected at large, serve staggered terms of 6 years.

An attorney, a corporate executive, an engineer, and an educator will vie for Easttown Township’s two available supervisor seats.

For Easttown Township Board of Supervisors, the Easttown Township Democratic Committee has endorsed the following candidates:

  • Supervisor at Large: Alex Bosco, Professional Engineer
  • Supervisor at Large: Eric Unger, Attorney

For Easttown Township Board of Supervisors, the Easttown Township Republican Committee has endorsed the following candidates:

  • Supervisor at Large: Alessandra Nicolas, Corporate executive
  • Supervisor at Large: Jay Jennings, Educator

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TE School District School Board

The TE School District school board race is going to be interesting as there are no incumbents on the ballot – Scott Dorsey (I), Tina Whitlow (D), Mary Garrett Itin (D) and Kyle Boyer (D) are not seeking reelection. Terms on the school board are four years.

Voting Precincts:

Region 1- Tredyffrin E-2, E-3, E-4, E-5, M-1, M-2, M-5, M-6, W-3, W-4,
Region 2- Tredyffrin M-3, M-4, M-7, W-1, W-2, W-5
Region 3- Tredyffrin E-1, Easttown 1-7

The Tredyffrin Township and Easttown Democratic Committees endorsed the following candidates for the office of Tredyffrin-Easttown School Director:

  • Region 1: Dr. Yolanda Allen, Nonprofit executive
  • Region 2: Dr. Robert Singh, Vascular surgeon *
  • Region 3: Susan Audrain, Retired
  • Region 3: MaryAnn Piccioni, Constituent Services Advisor for State Representative

(* Region 2 School board candidate Nancy Coradi (D), Sales & Marketing Specialist is challenging Singh in primary)

The Tredyffrin Township and Easttown Republican Committees endorsed the following candidates for the office of Tredyffrin-Easttown School Director:

  • Region 1: Leslie Elken, Educator
  • Region 2: Deanna Wang, Pharmaceutical consultant
  • Region 3: Rachel Kill, Senior underwriter
  • Region 3: Bill Nolan, Retired cost price analyst

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The COVID-19 pandemic overwhelmed the functioning of school districts (and school boards), including T/E. Few would question that this past year has been difficult for schools, and for school boards who oversee them. Could this be part of the reason that no incumbents are seeking reelection?

With four seats available on the TE School Board and no incumbents on the ballot, it’s going to be interesting to see what happens. Except for Scott Dorsey who is a registered Independent (although he was elected as a Democrat), the remaining school board directors are all Ds. The nine candidates vying for the four school board seats represent diverse and varied backgrounds.

In recent years, I do not recall a primary election for the school board where there is a challenge for a seat, but we have that this year. The local democratic committee officially endorsed Robert Singh as their candidate for Region 2. However, Nancy Coradi (D) is challenging Singh in the primary election. Here is a case where your vote in the primary election matters. Once the votes are counted, either Singh or Coradi will move onto the general election in November against Republican Deanna Wang.

Easttown Township Supervisor Candidate Question: What is the single most important issue facing Easttown Township? Candidates Respond

On November 5, 2019, Easttown residents will be voting for two Easttown Township Supervisors. The following is a list of the supervisor candidates:

Easttown Township Supervisor Candidates

Beth D’Antonio (D)
Alessandra Nicolas (R)
Karl Romberger (R) Incumbent
Michael Wacey (D)

The candidates were asked, “In your opinion, what is the single most important issue facing Easttown Township; and what in your background, experience or education prepares you to help with this specific issue?” I appreciate their willingness to respond quickly and hope that voters will find the information helpful in making their supervisor voting decisions. The responses follow (in alphabetical order by last name):

Beth D’Antonio Response:

Easttown Township is at a very exciting point in history, with unprecedented growth throughout Chester County. I believe the single most important issue facing Easttown is how our township officials and their appointees ensure that opportunities for growth respect the priorities of the citizens. We are fortunate enough to live in a highly desirable township with an incredible quality of life and vibrant and active community. As outlined in the comprehensive plan the responsibility of the supervisors is to ensure the vision of responsible measured growth that improves upon our existing responsive government services with transparency and put the needs of the community first. I am an Easttown native, small business owner, operations executive, mother of two elementary school age children, and have a deep understanding and investment in the responsible growth of our township. I have over 20 years of experience managing multimillion dollars budgets, providing transparent leading edge operational solutions and innovations in infrastructure. I am adept at building meaningful relationships and synergies across stakeholders and have a passion for my home and neighbors. I am a dedicated volunteer and servant leader in the community and look forward to collaborating and giving a voice to all Easttown residents.

Alessandra Nicolas Response:

For the last 7 years, I have had the joy of volunteering my time with Easttown Township on various Committees and Boards focused on financial and civic matters. Throughout those years, I have had the privilege of seeing several issues of importance to the Residents of our community. At the moment, I see the convergence of multiple interrelated matters arriving at the doorstep of the Board of Supervisors.

As I have spent time talking to many Residents, what I have heard to be most important can be summarized in the following 5 areas;

  • Fiscal Responsibility
  • Increased Transparency
  • Responsible Zoning
  • Collaboration between Township and School Board
  • Ensuring Funding for Fire/EMS

As a Resident, Mother, Daughter, Wife, Friend, Neighbor, Accountant, Finance Exec, Landlord, Easttown Library Trustee, Easttown Citizens Advisory Committee Member, Hilltop House Committee Chair, Village of Berwyn Parking Study Member, I have devoted a large portion of my charitable time working on issues and projects that matter to our Township and Community. My goal is to continue to listen to the needs, wants and ideas of the Residents that make up our wonderful Township.

Karl Romberger Response:

We need to be able to talk to each other. We can’t make lasting, impactful, positive change any other way. The issue is about getting it done.

A Supervisor needs to develop strong, community-supported consensus on the way forward. The current major zoning and land development initiatives are prime examples. Reasonable minds can meet about the scope, size, and pace of change. If we don’t come to agreement, whatever we do today will be undone tomorrow.

I spent an entire professional career listening to competing concerns, knowing the law that controls, and either finding a solution or making the case for why the result should favor a position. There’s more right ways than one to a solution.

I’ve been a Supervisor for two years. The recent Devereux conditional use dispute is an example of my quiet leadership. Hearing about new facts at a Board meeting, I suggested the zoning officer needed to reconsider the conditional use. That solved a major issue for neighbors, without going to court.

Michael Wasey Response:

Easttown is a great place to live and raise a family. Lately, we have had very strong community concern over development in Devon, development in Berwyn, and the upcoming use of the Devereaux facility. The root cause of these becoming major issues is a lack of transparency and a focus on doing the minimum required by our current board of supervisors.

My background in consulting to Fortune 500 companies has set me up to address this issue. I work with the leaders of major companies to bring their interactions with suppliers, customers, and other partners into the 21st century. This involves leveraging technology to make it possible to interact whenever, wherever, and however they want. This results in transparency and a focus on the partner’s needs.

The citizens of Easttown deserve the same. Some examples are:

  • If a citizen cannot get to the supervisor meeting, it should be broadcast.
  • If a citizen is busy during a township meeting, they should be able to see it on YouTube.
  • Notices should not just go to the minimum required but should be available to everyone.

We live in a great township, but it can be better.

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