‘A changing of the guard’

Apr 9, 2024

With the conclusion of this year’s town election, Select Board member David Tatelbaum announced the “changing of the guard” with the reassignment of the board’s chair and vice chair positions at its meeting Monday, April 8.

Shawn McDonald is now serving as the board’s chair, with Stanley Mickelson as the vice chair. 

Completing his second year as chair, Tatelbaum said, “It’s been an honor and privilege to serve with all you here.”

He added how he looks forward to a “productive year,” with “gigantic challenges” ahead.

“I look forward to answering those challenges with my colleagues,” he said.

McDonald said, “I want to thank David for his two years as chairman of the board. David became really involved as chairman in a lot of things going on in town and I’d like to see that continue.”

He also welcomed Christopher O’Neil as the newest member of the board, sharing how he looks forward to seeing what O’Neil’s knowledge and efforts can do in making it a “better board.”

McDonald thanked Frank Gracie for his nine years of service to the board, wishing him well and a speedy recovery.

As the new chair, McDonald said he had one suggestion so far that he’d like the board to consider, which is increasing its involvement with contract negotiations. 

He said he often hears community members complain that the Select Board does not have enough information when it makes its decisions on contracts. 

McDonald said he knows this to not be true, but suggested that a member of the board be present during all negotiations as an observer to ensure full transparency.

He said he also would like to bring back Select Board representation with the School Committee when it comes to their negotiations. 

Although there hasn’t been one for a few years now, McDonald said, “I think if we’re just there, sometimes it makes everybody feel good and I think that’s what we want to do.”