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Two Selectboard seats contested in this year’s election

GUILFORD—Several newcomers to town politics have entered the fray for the Selectboard election on Town Meeting Day, Tuesday, March 7 at the Guilford Center School gymnasium. Polls are open from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.

Incumbent Troy Revis, currently the board’s vice chair, will not seek re-election for a two-year term.

Vying for his seat are Nathanael Matthiesen and Richard Wizansky.

Challenging incumbent Richard Clark for the three-year seat is Verandah Porche.

Matthiesen, a 1999 graduate of Brattleboro Union High School, is a steward in the UFCW, the union representing the Brattleboro Food Co-op’s workers. He and his wife, Tadj Schreck, run Up the Road Farm, a small vegetable farm on Bullock Road.

He says, “I have been involved with my communities since I was in high school... I strongly believe in the values that are associated with small-scale agriculture — land stewardship, environmental and economic sustainability, and community — which are an integral part of the 2015-2020 Guilford Town Plan as well.

“This is my first foray into public office, although I have worked extensively with three different unions that I have been a member of over the past 12 years or so. I’ve been pretty community minded wherever I have lived and involved in myriad smaller projects over the years.

“I’m concerned about the direction our country is going, which persuaded me to run for Selectboard,” Matthiesen said.

Wizansky, a library board trustee, told The Commons, “I am running now because this is a very exciting time in Guilford as we work toward achieving the goals of the town plan, enhance town-wide communication and as we strive to make it possible for people to live and work in this most wonderful of towns. More subjectively, I am running now because personal activism is one way I can cope with the current chaos in our government and culture.”

Porche, a writer and poet who has never run for office, said she is jumping in this year because of a “desire to serve my home town at this time in my life: the youth of age, [and as] a grassroots response to [the] misogyny and cruelty of this recent election season.”

She said she will bring “a dedication to listening, considering, and creating solutions to common problems.”

Clark, a lifelong resident of Guilford, has served on the Selectboard since 2002, many terms as chair. He has represented the town on multiple boards, including the Windham Regional Commission and Rescue Inc.

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Originally published in The Commons issue #397 (Wednesday, March 1, 2017).

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