Monica McNally Announces Intent to Transition to Selectman as Running Mate Jon Zagrodzky Seeks Darien’s First Selectman Role
DARIEN, CT -- In their monthly meeting on Wednesday, July 12th, the Darien Republican Town Committee (“RTC”) completed months of meetings and interviews wherein the 21 member political body considered candidates for all local positions that will be voted on in the upcoming election.
During her interview with the RTC, Monica McNally announced her intention not to seek reelection as First Selectman, but instead will seek election to become a member of the Board of Selectmen.
Emphasizing the importance of building strong leadership and acknowledging the strength of the bench, McNally announced that current Selectman Jon Zagrodzky will seek the office of First Selectman - a commitment that Zagrodzky affirmed during his own interview.
Marcy Minnick will also seek another term as Selectman, thereby preserving continuity of the 2021 slate for the Republican Board of Selectmen team in the upcoming election.
The RTC then voted to nominate a full slate of candidates for the upcoming 2023 election, including their approval of the new Board of Selectmen line-up.
The finalized RTC-recommended full suite of Republican municipal candidates can be found below.
The Darien Republicans will now move to hold their Caucus proceedings on Tuesday, July 25th at 6:00 pm in the Darien Town Hall Auditorium. There, the party and all Town of Darien Republican electors will hear any petitions to those nominations before formally voting to endorse a full slate of candidates.
First Selectman McNally’s impressive tenure will be forever remembered for the incredible vision and work surrounding the acquisition of Great Island. The countless hours contributed by McNally and her team of other elected officials and volunteers have made town preservation and ownership of Great Island possible. The same dedication will help carry Great Island into the next phase of possibilities.
McNally’s term is one of notable success, where her long history of town legislative service and her invaluable, unwavering commitment and leadership has served all Darienites. She is a steadfast and thoughtful leader who works around the clock with her colleagues in a bipartisan fashion to ensure our town is safe and well-managed.
Through collaborative leadership, strategic thinking, and a track record of upholding, expanding and improving town services, McNally has earned the trust and respect of Darien’s residents, business owners, town employees and neighboring elected officials.
McNally made great strides in fostering collaboration between our schools, Post 53, multiple non-profits, other dedicated associations and the Town on addressing the mental health needs of our residents culminating in the creation of the Darien Mental Health Task Force. Prioritizing the mental health and wellbeing of Darien’s residents has been at the forefront of McNally’s work as First Selectman and will continue to be a major focus for the team.
On the Municipal side of the budget ledger, McNally has helped deliver low budget increases, further supporting Darien’s all-important AAA credit rating. With the help of an exceptional team, she accomplished this by strictly requiring justification of all town department operating and capital expenditures, negotiating meaningful changes to collective bargaining contracts and recruiting and retaining high-quality employees. Her notable efforts to seek efficiencies have kept town operating costs down. And she accomplished all of this while keeping public safety issues, such as flood mitigation and transportation improvements, at the forefront while encouraging commercial and residential development that has promoted a rich and diverse culture and preserved Darien’s small, New England town charm.
Republican Town Committee Chairman, Rachel Taylor, had the following to say in reaction to the news:
“The Republican Party of Darien thanks Monica McNally for dedicating herself to running the town of Darien with compassion and exemplary leadership. The role of First Selectman is all encompassing, one that is not easy or effortless, and our heartfelt thanks go out to Monica for her focus and care. Whether using her years of experience on RTM’s Public Works Committee to inform meaningful and necessary changes to mitigate the dangers of town flooding or helping residents navigate town government services, she always stands ready to assist.
“The hallmarks of Monica’s leadership and her tenure will be long remembered as a period of amazing progress, prosperity and preservation for Darien – punctuated by the incredible and historic acquisition of Great Island. We are pleased that Monica will continue as a Selectman with the team of Jon Zagrodzky and Marcy Minnick, and we welcome her future focus on realizing the full potential of Great Island. Monica’s commitment to conservation and a long-term vision for future generations will benefit residents of Darien in perpetuity.
“We are forever grateful to Monica and are excited to herald former Board of Finance Chairman and current Selectman Jon Zagrodzky as Darien’s next First Selectman, keeping the town running efficiently and smoothly - the way Darienites have come to expect,” said Taylor.
First Selectman Monica McNally made the following remarks:
“Serving as your First Selectman has been an immense honor, and I want to thank the Republican Town Committee and all those who have supported me along the way in this role.
“I have reached my decision not to seek re-election as First Selectman of Darien after thoughtful reflection, which brings with it a deep sense of appreciation for what we have achieved together in our community. It has been a privilege to serve Darien.
“I’m thrilled that our team will remain intact, with Jon Zagrodzky seeking the Office of First Selectman and Marcy running again as Selectman. Together, we will continue our commitment to serving Darien and building on the progress we've made over the last two years.
“My title may change, but my commitment to our shared vision for Darien never will.
“Thank you for your trust, your friendship and your unwavering dedication to our community,” stated McNally.
First Selectman Candidate Jon Zagrodzky shared the following statement:
“I would like to thank Monica for her long and continuing dedication to the Town of Darien. She is an amazing person, leader and public servant. I consider her a great friend, and I’m very happy that she will continue to serve the town on the Board of Selectmen. It is a privilege to work with her and Marcy Minnick, as well as our other Democratic candidates. A great team for sure.
“As for my own candidacy, I am very enthusiastic. I look forward to offering a vision for the town at a campaign kick-off that Monica, Marcy and I will hold in the very near future,” said Zagrodzky.
The Darien Republican Town Committee’s primary responsibility is to recruit and support qualified, competent candidates for elected and appointed positions who firmly believe that all Darien residents are best served by a transparent, accountable, responsive, and fiscally prudent government.
For more information about the roles and responsibilities of the Darien Republican Town Committee, including opportunities to serve, please visit the Darien Republicans website: https://www.darienrepublicans.com
FULL 2023 MUNICIPAL SLATE, AS NOMINATED BY THE DARIEN RTC:
First Selectman: Jon Zagrodzky
Selectman: Monica McNally
Selectman: Marcy Minnick
Town Clerk: Christa McNamara
[Town] Treasurer: Joan Hendrickson
[Town] Tax Collector: Kathleen Larkins
Board of Finance: James Palen
Board of Finance: Taylor Carter
Board of Education: Dennis Maroney
Board of Education: Gregory Grambling
Board of Assessment & Appeals: Richard Dolcetti
Planning & Zoning Commission: Amy Barsanti
Planning & Zoning Commission: Michael Nedder
Planning & Zoning Commission: Jamie Zionic (2 Year Term)
Town Constable: Alan Hyatt
Town Constable: Lou Calastro