Thursday, June 15, 2017
By James Lomuscio
Representative Town Meeting (RTM) member Melissa Kane announced today that she is seeking the Democratic nomination to run for Westport’s first selectman in November.
“I am very, very honored to be announcing that I am putting my hat in the ring,” said Kane, who has filed with the Connecticut Election Enforcement Committee. “Many, many people have reached out to me and asked me to run.”
The Democratic Town Committee (DTC) will have its formal nominating process July 18.
State Rep. Jonathan Steinberg, who is in his fourth term, ended his exploratory committee for first selectman on June 1 in order to remain focused on the state, which he said “is going through very, very tough times.”
An RTM member representing District 3 since 2011, Kane is no stranger to running for the Board of Selectmen.
In 2013, she took a leave from the RTM to run on a ticket with Helen Garten who lost to Jim Marpe, a Republican. Garten is currently selectwoman in the Marpe administration.
Kane did not say whom her running mate would be, adding that she would make an announcement within a week.
Kane, who recalled spending summers during 1970s at Compo Beach and going to the Big Top eatery on Post Road East, moved to Westport in 2002 and gained high visibility in recent years.
She served as co-chair of the Downtown Steering Committee with Dewey Loselle, overseeing the creation of the Downtown Master Plan. She currently serves with him heading the Downtown Plan Implementation Committee.
Marpe, 70, who is seeking the Republican Town Committee nomination for reelection, appointed Kane to both posts.
Elected secretary of the DTC in 2014, Kane became the group’s chair in 2016.
One of the organizers of the Women’s March on Washington, Connecticut Chapter, she also honored the Democratic Women of Westport and awarded its first scholarship to the Yale Campaign School for Women, which she completed.
Other town involvement includes: serving on the Westport Library’s Board of Trustees from 2008-11; being on the boards of Green Village Initiative and A Child’s Place; and participating at Earthplace, the Westport Arts Center and the Westport PTA.
“I want to run because I love Westport,” she said. “I’m one of the people who witnessed the growth of Westport.
“Right now, so much is in flux,” she said about plans for town growth. “But we have to do this while maintaining who we are.”
Kane, 48, is a graduate of Mt. Holyoke College with a B.A. in international relations. She lives with her husband, Jonathan Kane, and children George, 18, and Lily, 14. Her mother is noted artist and author Judith Orseck Katz.
Posted 06/15/17 at 02:09 PM Permalink