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A Rundown of Southampton’s Trustee and Tax Receiver Races

Thu, 11/02/2023 - 11:33

Five Democrats and five Republicans are facing off for the five Southampton Town Trustee seats, while Theresa Kiernan, the incumbent, and David Glazer are the candidates for tax receiver.

For trustee, Rainbow Chavis is a member of the Shinnecock Indian Nation and an owner of two businesses, Shinnecock Hemp Growers and HMP L.L.C. Running as a Democrat, she aims to "represent people of Southampton whose voices have historically been underrepresented."

On her website, she said her goal is to apply her "experience in promoting land restoration and restorative growing practices to protect our coastal land and water."

Matthew Parsons, who has been building aquariums professionally for 20 years, speaks "the language of the bay and the ocean because it is home to me," he said in an interview. "I want to become a trustee so I can implement some of the water quality and filtration lessons that I've learned."

A lifelong South Forker and a Democrat making his first run for office, Mr. Parsons has a marine biology degree, has worked as a commercial scalloper, and spent more than 1,000 days at sea as an observer for the National Marine Fisheries Service.

Margaret Friedlander, a Democrat who has held leadership roles with the Hampton Bays Citizens Advisory Committee, has been credited with sounding the alarm about battery energy storage systems, which led to a townwide moratorium on those facilities. Professionally, in the global marketing and advertising fields, she has managed multimillion-dollar budgets and implemented data-driven practices.

"I'm a passionate researcher, civically engaged community member, and environmental advocate," she told The Star. Of the trustees, she said, "We need to make sure that the people in these roles are fulfilling them to the best of their ability," and pledged to do just that if elected.

Joseph McLoughlin, a Democrat, has held multiple elected and appointed roles in Southampton. He was a village board member and a member of the Historic Museum Committee for Restoration and Revitalization, and has received the Southampton Village Intrepid Citizens Award.

If elected trustee, Mr. McLoughlin said on his website, he will "promote environmentally friendly zoning and fight for long-term solutions that will protect our water and environment for years to come."

Dr. Daniel Van Arsdale, also a Democrat, was a field surgeon for the military, serving with the 18th Airborne Corps of the 42nd Infantry Division during Operation Iraqi Freedom. According to his website, he has practiced neuromusculoskeletal, family, and hospice and palliative care medicine for many years and is at present the director of medical education for Stony Brook Southampton Hospital.

On the Republican ticket, Ed Warner Jr. is running for re-election. A former bayman with generational ties to Southampton, he has been a trustee for 17 years. He said in an interview that his priority is stabilizing the trustees' finances by securing their tax line in Southampton's budget, which he said will enable the group to do its work.

"It gives us a funding source . . . for shellfish restoration, for Shinnecock Bay restoration, for maintaining public access, for fighting the lawsuits to maintain beach-driving access for everyone in the community. It's really important," Mr. Warner said.

Scott Horowitz, a Republican incumbent, has served 10 years in the role and is the trustees' current president. A Coast Guard-licensed captain, he has also served two terms on the Southampton Town Conservation Board.

On his website, Mr. Horowitz said he has "proactively overseen many waterfront capital projects" and has "resolved many complex legal matters" for the trustees. 

Richard T. (Chip) Maran, a Republican who lives in North Sea, has been a bayman and commercial fisherman for many years. His background is in aquaculture and the marine sciences. He told The Star his priority, if elected, is ensuring "access and egress for the freeholders of the Town of Southampton." He said he decided to run after seeing deteriorating water quality and fewer harvests and catches for those making a living on the water.

"We should work hand in hand with the town to come up with plausible solutions, not crackpot solutions," Mr. Maran said. "It's time to step up to bat."

Mark P. Haslinger, a Republican who lives in the Bay Point neighborhood outside Sag Harbor Village, has a business and finance-focused background in the securities industry. He is running to bring the trustees a varied set of skills and expertise, and has called Southampton's waters "the most precious assets" in town.

"My top priorities," Mr. Haslinger said in an interview, "would be protecting beach access and our unique maritime traditions, number one. Second would be to advocate for common-sense solutions and be a bipartisan problem-solver. The third priority would be to protect the independence of the trustees."

Daniel Martel, a first-time candidate, rounds out the Republican trustee slate. A lifelong resident of Hampton Bays, he studied business at Suffolk Community College, has coached youth sports, and has volunteered with the Southampton Kiwanis Club. According to his website, his "guiding principles" are "hard work, dedication, and an understanding of traditional ways of life," and he is committed to "preserving the maritime way of life and protecting the community's natural resources."

For Tax Receiver

The tax receiver candidates are Theresa Kiernan, a Republican who has held the seat since 2007, and David Glazer, a Democrat who touts his background in business and nonprofit experience.

Mr. Glazer, who has lived in Southampton since 2010, has worked in the health care field, for state and federal governmental agencies, and for nonprofit organizations, and has owned and operated small businesses. "I am a believer in re-inventing myself, in exploring as much as I can in both life and work," Mr. Glazer said on his website. "I feel a commitment on the part of all of those on the ticket to support and protect our East End communities."

Ms. Kiernan, who brings 15 years of experience in the investment and banking field to the tax receiver role, said on her website that she has "maintained a consistent budget by reducing costs and implementing efficient technologies in tax collection." Her community involvement includes serving as president of the board of Southampton Youth Services and as treasurer of the Water Mill Community Club.



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