Democrats gala honors volunteers, rallies the troops for November

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The Monroe Democratic Town Committee held its annual Jefferson-Jackson Recognition Gala on Friday, Sept. 27, honoring Angelo Lisis, Tino Modaffari and Jerry Rookasin — three members of the Monroe Parks and Recreation Commission with a combined 60 years of service to the Commission.

“Our parks and trails would not be the same without the ideas and hard work of these three men,” said DTC Chairman Nick Kapoor.

Along with honoring these three men, the DTC celebrated the 15 candidates running for office this year.

“We are running 15 qualified, interested, energetic and enthusiastic candidates for municipal office this year. The goal of every single Democratic candidate is to make Monroe the best Monroe it can be right now,” Kapoor said.

“Our town needs short- and long-term planning along with logical, business-friendly economic development and an overhaul in the managing of our legal fees. We will work hard and show the citizens of Monroe what we can do in these coming days and be victorious on Election Day,” said Dan Hunsberger, Democratic candidate for first selectman.

Other candidates for office include: Jerry Stevens for Tax Collector; Nick Kapoor, Dee Dee Martin, Ray Knapp, Ken Wielk, Patrick Carleton, Phyllis Kansky for Town Councill; Amy Primorac, Jason Maur, Steve Kirsch for Board of Education; John Ostaszewski, Board of Finance; Leon Ambrosey for Planning and Zoning Commission; Cathleen Lindstrom for Planning and Zoning Alternate; Pat Tomchik for Constable.

Also joining the Monroe Democrats was Connecticut’s Senior U.S. Sen. Richard Blumenthal. Blumenthal discussed the obstruction of what he said was a small group of senators and representatives trying to halt the Congress from compromising on funding the government after Monday, Sept. 30. Since the gala, Congress did fail to compromise, leading to a government shutdown that was ongoing at press time Wednesday.

The senator also thanked the hard work of the three honorees at the local level and thanked all Monroe Democrats for their efforts and dedication to get Democrats elected at the local, state and federal levels.

Along with citations from Sen. Blumenthal, the honorees received citations from: State Comptroller Kevin Lembo, State Attorney General George Jepsen, Lieutenant Governor Nancy Wyman, State Senator Anthony Musto and the Connecticut State Senate, and Congressman Jim Himes.

The Monroe Democrats also recognized Former Monroe First Selectwoman Karen Burnaska who is the winner of the 2013 Connecticut Democratic Party Ella T. Grass Leadership Award. Burnaska served as Monroe’s First Selectwoman from 1995 to 2001.

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