Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Delegates Choose Judges

Judicial Delegates from Columbia County attended the Judicial District Convention Friday at the Albany County Courthouse to nominate candidates for the office of Justice of the New York State Supreme Court.
 
Judicial delegates attending the convention were (back row) Doug McGivney, Kinderhook, Joyce Thompson, Taghkanic, Robina Ward, Hillsdale, Virginia Martin, Stockport, Judge Raymond Elliott, Cyndy Hall, Chair, Columbia County Democratic Committee and Judge Thomas Breslin. (front row) Dianne Klinger, Chatham, Carol Sacks, Copake and Rose Aulino, Copake.
 
Judge Thomas Breslin of Albany County and Judge Raymond Elliott of Rensselaer County were unanimously endorsed as candidates for the November election and will appear on the Democratic line on the ballot.
 

Friday, September 23, 2011

The Best Team of Competent Candidates for Columbia County


• • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •
 
This year in Columbia County, voters are going to have a real choice. They can choose whether to support the same old bunch of people, who don't seem to get much done. Or they can chose the incredibly qualified Democrats who are running Countywide this year.

Competency!
(l-r) Richard Koweek, Peter Stoll, Eugene Keeler, Dr George Davis

• • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •
 
Judge Richard Koweek for County Judge
Richard Koweek grew up and has lived is entire life in Columbia County. He raised great kids here too.

He's practiced most every kind of law that is handled at County Court. He was also elected City Judge in 2009 and currently sits in Hudson City Court. That experience will serve him well on the bench. It will also serve the people of Columbia County well. His opponent is sorely lacking the broad based experience that Judge Koweek brings to the bench.

County Court jurisdiction is broad and diverse, and the position of County Court Judge is multifaceted. It requires a person who can deal with emotional family issues with sensitivity and understanding yet is firm and forthright when dealing with people who have harmed others. He also understands the legal complexities of estate and civil practice. But most of all, he is fair and respects all who come before the Court.

Judge Koweek’s background, temperament, and experience uniquely qualify him to be the next Columbia County Court judge
Visit Judge Koweek's website.
Judge Koweek has been endorsed by:
Columbia County Democratic CommitteeWorking Families Party, and the Hudson Valley Area Labor Federation

Contributions may be made to:

Committee to Elect Richard Koweek
65 Glenwood Blvd
Hudson NY 12534
Frank Rees Treasurer




 • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •

Peter Stoll CPA for County Treasurer
Peter Stoll is a Certified Public Accountant licensed and registered in New York State with extensive audit and income tax experience. He also has an extensive knowledge of information technology, financial systems, and internal controls. Skills that have been sorely lacking, as our county has thrashed back and forth from one unthought out scheme after another.
Peter Stoll has managed the finances for several mid-size businesses for the past 35 years. In this way he has developed the skills required to manage, monitor, and control the way public money is spent in Columbia County. He has a record of implementing major cost savings. Something that the next few years are going to require. He is eager to put his skills to work for the benefit of all of us, and to help reduce the cost of managing the County’s government.

These times require that we seek out and hire only the best people we can find to help solve our financial situation. That is what elections are supposed to be about, hiring the best person for the job at hand. We have found the best person for the job. He is Peter Stoll, the only CPA in the race.
Learn more about Peter on his website.
Peter Stoll has been endorsed by:
Columbia County Democratic CommitteeWorking Families Party, and the Hudson Valley Area Labor Federation

Contributions may be made to:

Peter Stoll 4 Treasurer
PO Box 113
East Chatham, NY  12060

• • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •

Eugene Keeler for District Attorney
Gene Keeler is an institution in Columbia County. He is a former elected district attorney and has held the positions of public defender, conflict public defender, and, currently, director of legal and advocacy services at COARC. Gene holds a J.D. degree from the University of Memphis and a master’s degree from the University of Tennessee. He is an attorney with 30 years of general practice that includes criminal law and elder law, and is a licensed master’s-level social worker.Gene Keeler knows what is wrong with the system, because he has seen it from every side.

He has been telling the people of this county that the system is rotten and broken for years. Everyone knows about the cronyism, favoritism and shoddy work at the DA's office. But only one person was willing to stand up and call it out for what it was. That man is Gene Keeler. Lots of people have no problem with what goes on there. Because they figure that if they ever need to get off of a DWI or a domestic assault, that there familial, business or political connections, will get them off. When they have issues with the police or the DA's office, everything is just taken care of, with easy sentences if it even goes to court and rarely does anyone read about it in the paper.

But the regular Jane or Joe, who work hard, pay their taxes try to be good citizens, get the book thrown at them, in order to keep the conviction rate high at the DA's office. Political connections should not buy you a "get out of jail free card". Gene has promised to end the “get out of jail free” program for the well-connected. Instead he will give all citizens equal treatment under the law.  Isn't that what we should all expect?

He cares about justice, not statistics. While at the same time, he will make sure that all evidence gets to court and will ooperate fully with the police and community agencies. He will work full time to save the taxpayers money, and will work especially hard to assist victims and to lock up hard-core criminals.

It's time to clean up the mess at the District Attorney's office and stop playing political games with people's lives. Gene will make it a place where all of the citizens of Columbia County will feel that they have an impartial and fair person sitting in the prosecutors chair. Eugene Keeler is the right person for District Attorney.

Eugene Keeler has been endorsed by:
Columbia County Democratic Committee  Working Families Party, and the Hudson Valley Area Labor Federation

Contributions made be made to:

Committee for DA Reform Vote Keeler
75 Spook Rock Rd
Hudson NY 12534


• • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •

Dr. George Davis for County Coroner
Dr. Davis has served one four year term as County Coroner. He is also the only doctor in recent memory to serve as Coroner. Shockingly, the Coroner's position does not require any medical training at all. All that is required is getting the most votes on Election Day. 

Not many people understand what a corner does. Most people think that the coroner pronounces people "dead". In fact the coroner often gets to the scene quite a while after a person has died. What the coroner mostly does, is investigate why or how the person died. In essence the coroner is the advocate for the deceased.

Dr. Davis has four years experience as County Coroner. He has 30 years’ experience in family practice medicine in Columbia County. He has done extensive training in death investigation. He has a detailed knowledge of the legal system and ethics, and holds a Master’s Degree in bioethics, along with extensive experience in grief work.

He is the advocate for those who have no voices. He is the compassionate doctor who tends to the grieving families. He is the only candidate in the race for coroner with the education, experience and medical training to do the job properly.

He has earned the thanks and apprecaition from so many people in Columbia County, because he was there for them at one of the worst times in their life. He's earned their respect and he should have your vote. Keep the doctor at the corner's office.

Contributions may be made to:

Committee to Elect George F Davis MD
161 Turkey Hill Road
Red Hook, NY 12571

• • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •

Monday, September 19, 2011

Organized Labor Makes Their Endorsments

The Hudson Valley Area Labor Federation

Upper Hudson Central Labor Council
have announced their endorsements in the
2011 Columbia County elections

Mike Lonigro, President of the Upper Hudson Central Labor Council announces the endorsements.
The Endorsements
County-Wide Races
County Court Judge - Richard Koweek
District Attorney - Eugene Keeler
County Treasurer - Peter Stoll

Copake
Town Board - Susan Winchell-Sweeney
Town Clerk/Tax Collector - Rachel Collins Kelly

Hudson
Mayor - Nicholas Haddad
Common Council President - Donald A. Moore
1st Ward Supervisor - Sarah Hoe Sterling
4th Ward Supervisor - William Hughes
3rd Ward Supervisor - Ellen Thurston
1st Ward Aldermen (2 Seats) - Larissa Thomas & Dave Marston

New Lebanon
Supervisor - Margaret Robertson
Town Justice - Darcy Poppey

Stockport
Town Board - Carl L. Roby

Stuyvesant
Supervisor - Lee Jamison

(l-r) Victor Mendolia, Cyndy Hall, Mike Lonigro, Bob Balcom, Nick Haddad, Lee Jamison, Peter Stoll, Richard Koweek, Ellen Thurston, William Hughes Jr, Sarah Sterling, Don Moore, Larissa Thomas, Ernie Reis, Devin McConnell
Other Candidate Recommendations
In addition, 6 more candidates were recommended tonight for endorsement. Those recommendations will be ratified at the UH CLC Kingston meeting, Monday September 26, 2011.

Chatham 
Supervisor - Kurt Barensfeld
Town Board - Robert Balcom

Copake
Supervisor - Linda Gabaccia

Gallatin
Supervisor- Steven Sorman
Town Board - Thomas Toigo

Hillsdale
Supervisor - Robina Ward
•  •  •  •  •  •  •  •  •  •  •

The HVALF/UHCLC released the following statement:
Tonight the Hudson Valley Area Labor Federation and the Upper Hudson Central Labor Council Columbia Chapter announced its endorsements in the 2011 Columbia County elections. The announcements were made inside the SEIU 1199 offices in Hudson, NY.

“The Upper Hudson Central Labor Council is pleased to be making endorsements in this year's elections. As we get further into the election season we will be working to see our candidates elected. Pandering to wealthy corporations has not produced the jobs we need locally. By working with the Hudson and Columbia Democratic candidates we will put our local economy back on track,” said Mike Lonigro, President of the Upper Hudson Central Labor Council.

“We have great candidates in Columbia. We will unite to protect Columbia’s middle class and save jobs and services,” said Paul Ellis-Graham, President of the Hudson Valley Area Labor Federation.

"The healthcare workers of 1199SEIU are looking forward to providing the "boots on the ground" in order to elect the candidates who understand and are committed to solving the problems that working families face today. All politics is local--and we are taking these races very seriously," said Antonella Pechtel, Political Director, 1199 SEIU Hudson Valley/Capital Region.



“The Columbia County Democrats, together with the Central Labor Council, will keep fighting for this county’s middle class. We say no to the extreme right’s anti-worker agenda and are committed to saving jobs,” said Cyndy Hall, Chair of the Columbia Democrats.



"The Hudson City Democratic Committee is grateful to have labor’s support in this years election. The support of organized labor helped our five excellent candidates who faced primaries, to win those races by unheard of margins. Together, we will go on to win in November and to change Hudson and Columbia County,” said Victor Mendolia, Hudson City Democratic Chairman.

“Collective bargaining works when management and labor negotiates from positions of respect. The HVALF/UHCLC endorsements mean that within this field of candidates for Columbia County offices there is respect for organized labor. Such mutual respect is a building block for a fair deal for workers and taxpayers,” said Ernie Reis, a retired teacher and member of the New York State United Teachers says.

This announcement emphasized the desire by both Labor and candidates running for office to work together to bring good government that will serve the middle class during this very difficult economic downturn. For many years Columbia wanted the support of Labor, and it was through the hard work of Mike Lonigro, Beth Soto, Director of the HVALF and the Columbia Community that this coalition was formed.

County Dems Choose Their Officers


Columbia County Democratic Committee Elects New Officers
 

• Cyndy Hall - Chair •
Victor Mendolia -1st-Vice Chair
Peter Bujanow - 2nd Vice-Chair
Carol Sacks - Treasurer
Kay Abraham - Secretary
Keith St. John - Parliamentarian • 


(l-r) Outgoing Chair-Chris Nolan; Newly elected Chair-Cyndy Hall;
2nd Vice-Chair-Peter Bujanow; Parliamentarian-Keith St. John;
Secretary-Kaye Abraham; and Treasurer-Carol Sacks.
1st Vice-Chair, Victor Mendolia, had another commitment and is not pictured.

On Thursday September 15th, the Columbia County Democratic Committee elected new officers at its re-organizational meeting.  Cyndy Hall of Claverack was elected Chair. Miss Hall has served as 1st Vice-Chair of the Columbia County Democratic Committee for the past 4 years. Elected 1st Vice Chair was Victor Mendolia, Chairman of the Hudson City Democratic Committee. Peter Bujanow of Kinderhook was elected 2nd Vice-Chair. Carol Sacks was elected Treasurer, a role she has held for the past 4 years,  Kay Abraham of Germantown was elected Secretary of the Committee. Keith St. John of Kinderhook was appointed by the Executive Committee as Parlimentarian of the Columbia County Democratic Committee.

Upon election as Chair, Cyndy Hall said "We are so proud of our newly elected team. They all have the skills and experience we need to move the Columbia County Democratic Party forward. Electing officers from Claverack, Hudson, Kinderhook and Copake, ensures that the urban, suburban and rural issues of Columbia County are all represented. We look forward to finding common ground on the serious issues which affect all Columbia County residents. Decreasing the burden on taxpayers, supporting existing business and attracting new business which will provide living-wage jobs will be our priorities. We need to hold the line on all County spending and begin thinking "out of the box" to resolve these issues for the people of Columbia County."

Hall invited all Columbia County Democrats to the next County meeting which will be held on October 20 at SPACE 360 on Warren Street, Hudson at 7pm.

Friday, September 9, 2011

Eugene Keeler for District Attorney

Eugene Keeler for 
Columbia County District Attorney
 

Experience     Family Values      Wisdom 
The right combination for justice.

Eugene Keeler of Claverack is a lifelong Columbia County resident. In 32 years of service to the county he has been elected district attorney and held the positions of public defender, conflict public defender, and, currently, director of legal and advocacy services at COARC.

Eugene Keeler holds a J.D. degree from the University of Memphis and a master’s degree from the University of Tennessee. He is an attorney with 30 years of general practice that includes criminal law and elder law, and a licensed master’s-level social worker.

As Columbia County District Attorney, Eugene Keeler will:

  • End the “get out of jail free” program for the well-connected
  • Lock up hard-core criminals
  • Give all citizens equal treatment under the law
  • Handle cases quickly
  • Make sure that all evidence gets to court
  • Cooperate fully with the police and community agencies
  • Keep the D.A.’s office open and accessible to all
  • Assist victims
  • Work full time and save taxpayer money
  • Care about justice, not statistics

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Vote for Judge Richard Koweek for County Judge


Judge Richard Koweek 
for Columbia County Judge


Richard Koweek of Hudson is an experienced, dedicated lawyer and judge who is ready, willing, and able to assume the responsibilities of County Court and to deliver the high quality judicial service that Columbia County deserves.

For the past 32 years, Richard Koweek’s law practice has concentrated in the areas of surrogate practice, criminal law, civil law, and family law. Since 2009 he has served as Hudson City Court Judge, bringing to the bench a combination of legal experience and community knowledge.

County Court jurisdiction is broad and diverse, and the position of County Court Judge is multifaceted. It requires a person who:
  • can deal with emotional family issues with sensitivity and understanding.
  • is firm and forthright when dealing with people who have harmed others.
  • understands the legal complexities of estate and civil practice.
  • is fair and respects all who come before the Court.
Judge Koweek’s background, temperament, and experience uniquely qualify him to be the next Columbia County Court judge.
 

Richard Koweek is a lifelong Hudson resident.
He and his wife, Toni Koweek, also an attorney, raised their family here.

Richard Koweek: A Community Volunteer
Richard Koweek
has served on the Board of Directors of Columbia Memorial Hospital, Columbia Children’s Foundation, Second Show, and Parsons Child and Family Center. He has served on the Board of Education for the Hudson City School District and as a director of the Ghostly Gallop, the Hudson Library 5K race. Time spent working with others to improve the community provides its own reward, and an understanding of the issues the community faces.

Judge Koweek has been endorsed by:
Columbia County Democratic Committee
Working Families Party of New York State
Hudson Valley Area Labor Federation

Visit Judge Koweek's Website

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Vote for George Davis MD for County Coroner

George Davis MD 
for County Coroner

Dr. George Davis of Germantown is incumbent Coroner for Columbia County.

Dr. Davis has:
  • 4 years’ experience as County Coroner
  • 30 years’ experience in family practice medicine in Columbia County
  • Extensive training in death investigation
  • Knowledge of the legal system and ethics
  • A Master’s Degree in bioethics
  • Extensive experience in grief work
George Davis is a team-oriented professional, part of the leadership at Columbia Memorial Hospital.

Unique Experience 
for a Unique Role
•  •  •

Vote for Peter Stoll for County Treasurer

Peter Stoll CPA
for Columbia County Treasurer
Peter Stoll CPA
Peter Stoll’s family roots in Columbia County reach back into the 1940s, and he has witnessed the many changes that have shaped this area.

Peter Stoll has managed the finances for several mid-size businesses for the past 35 years. In this way he has developed the skills required to manage, monitor, and control the way public money is spent in Columbia County. He is eager to put his skills to work for the benefit of all of us, and to help reduce the cost of managing the County’s government.

Highlights of Peter Stoll’s Professional Experience
  • A Certified Public Accountant licensed and registered in New York State with extensive audit and income tax experience.
  • Successfully developed and implemented effective accounting, financial, and budgeting systems for companies over a 35-year period.
  • Chief financial officer for three companies with revenues of more than $150 million annually.
  • Extensive knowledge of information technology, financial systems, and internal controls.
  • A record of implementing major cost savings.
  • An entrepreneur who understands business.
  • Superior communication and managerial skills.
Endorsed By
Columbia County Democratic Committee
Working Families Party of New York State
Hudson Valley Area Labor Federation

See Peter's My View piece in the Register-Star

Learn more about Peter Stoll at