This year voters will cast a total of three votes in two separate Board of Selectmen races. I offer my support to reelect Greg Bendel and Kevin Caira for the three-year term, and to elect Jomarie O’Mahony for the one-year unexpired term.
There are a lot of reasons to vote for these individuals, but my first inclination is always to look at how a candidate has contributed to the community before seeking elected office. Long-term positive community involvement indicates a love for this town and an intention to work toward its betterment. There is no question that these three pass my initial litmus test.
Kevin Caira has been an integral member of the Wilmington Sons of Italy for decades, including having served as President. He has been, and continues to be, at the forefront of most of their fundraising efforts. He put in countless hours serving as Vice Chairman of the Yentile Farm Recreational Development. He is a member of the Knights of Columbus, was a founding member of the Wildcat Athletic Alumni and Friends Association, has coached our youth in baseball and basketball. Those examples only touch the surface of his devotion to this town.
Greg Bendel was a member of the Wilmington 4.0 Committee, which advocated for passage of the new high school. A member of the Knights of Columbus, he has also volunteered for many other Wilmington community organizations – such as the Rotary Club, Local Heroes, and Relay for Life. A graduate, and now a teacher, at Shawsheen Tech, he is an active member of their alumni committee.
Jomarie O’Mahony founded We’re One Wilmington in 2010, which became one of the busiest and most effective service organizations in town. She has been a member and past-president of the Wilmington Educational Foundation. She has volunteered at her children’s schools and has coached youth soccer and softball.
As a School Committee member, I also weigh heavily a candidate’s support for education. Both Caira and Bendel have consistently supported the district’s need for appropriate funding, and they both supported the construction of a new high school. O’Mahony’s support of the schools is abundantly clear from her volunteer service.
Perhaps paramount to my voting decision is the candidate’s honesty and integrity. Very often I must make a guess based solely on that person’s public statements. That’s not the case this year. I have known Kevin Caira for close to 20 years. I have known Greg Bendel for nearly ten years. And I have known Jomarie O’Mahony for nine years. Despite what political adversaries may, or may not, say about them; I know that each of them is honest, earnest, and devoted to our hometown. I’m proud to cast a vote for each of them, and I encourage my friends and neighbors to do likewise.
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