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Ralph Ekstrand Takes Village Helm As Mayor

Village holds annual reorganization meeting

The most recent public meeting on April 2 of the Village of Farmingdale Board was a bittersweet ending for many existing members of the village board, including outgoing Mayor George Starkie. Following a jam-packed work session, Mayor Starkie expressed his sadness about it being his final board meeting and the official end of his mayoral term. “It’s been an experience of a lifetime,” Starkie told community members, remarking how incredible it has been to work with the board and village staff over the past years.

Starkie addressed the residents, “Thank you for the privilege to serve the community that I love; it’s been a labor of love.” He gave advice to the board members to remember to use the ruler of “is it good for Farmingdale” to guide future village operations.

The village elections were held on Tuesday, March 20. The results were:

Mayor – Ralph Ekstrand - 815 votes, Georgiana Sena - 639 votes

Two trustees: William Barrett 824 votes, Thomas Ryan 784 votes, Michael Manchin 641 votes, Susan Miles 637 votes.

The board resolved to declare the village “mayor” sign at Village Hall as surplus as a token of thanks for Starkie’s years of service to the village. It will be presented to Starkie at a later date. Starkie then officiated the swearing-in of Mayor-elect Ralph Ekstrand.

Starkie took a few extra minutes to thank his family for their support and patience through his mayoral term. About his wife, Patti, Starkie said, “It wasn’t easy for her, but she stuck with me; she’s the love of my life, and has made it all possible.”

Newly installed Mayor Ekstrand then took the reins and performed the swearing-in of Trustees William Barrett and Thomas Ryan. Assemblyman Joseph Saladino was also in attendance to present state citations to newly installed village members Ekstrand, Barrett and Ryan.

In addition, Ekstrand completed the annual re-organization appointments:

Patricia Christiansen—deputy mayor

Brian Harty—clerk, treasurer, assessor, tax collector, budget, records management, records access officer

Barbara Kelly—deputy village clerk, treasurer, deputy of records management, records access officer

Joseph Schweitzer—chair and member of zoning board of appeals

Marisa Tully—member of zoning board of appeals

David Nostrand—member of zoning board of appeals

Kenneth Camisa—member of zoning board of appeals

Lisa Waskiewicz—member of zoning board of appeals

Nick Varlotta—alternate of zoning board of appeals

Frank DeStefano—chair of planning board

Laura Coletti—member of planning board

Charles Gosline—member of planning board

Nick Parisi—member of planning board

Nick Varlotta—member of planning board

Frank DeStefano—member of planning board

Lawrence Jorgensen—alternative member of planning board

Michael Occhipinti—alternative member of planning board

John Capobianco—alternative member of planning board

William Rielly—chair and member of board of fire commissioners

Fred Schumeyer—member of board of fire commissioners

Michael O’Brien—member of board of fire commissioners

Kenneth Romeo—member of board of fire commissioners

Bruce Blovsky—member of board of fire commissioners

Kevin Walsh—village attorney

Robert Kirk—deputy village attorney

Thomas Delaquilla—deputy village attorney

Cheryl Cruthers—clerk to village justice

Andrew Fisch—superintendent of public works

Maria Zito—marriage officer

JoAnn Edling—director of civil defense, chief auxiliary police unit, and emergency management

William Johnston—village historian

Debra Pagan—registrar

Diane Correri—deputy registrar

Patricia Christiansen—chair of beautification

The board announced that all future work sessions would begin at 7 p.m. A public hearing on the tentative village budget will be held on Monday, April 16 at 7 p.m., and the village budget will be adopted on Monday, April 23.

The next public board of trustees meeting will be held on Monday, May 7 at 8 p.m. at Village Hall, 361 Main Street, in the conference room. Copies of the past minutes and future agendas can be found on the village website. Regular meetings are typically on the first Monday of each month at 8 p.m.

Next week in the Farmingdale Observer: Read about the Barton Properties public hearing.