Amherst elects several students to Town Meeting in light turnout
AMHERST — A dozen University of Massachusetts students, and at least one Amherst College student, appear to have won some of the 83 Town Meeting seats up for election Tuesday.
Five of the 10 precincts featured competition for Town Meeting seats. It was the only part of the election that wasn’t devoid of suspense, as incumbents for townwide office were unchallenged and even newcomers didn’t face competition.
This was reflected in the turnout, with just 1,342 of the 20,341 registered voters, or 6.6 percent, casting ballots.
Among those UMass students who seem to be headed to Town Meeting, according to unofficial results from Town Clerk Sandra Burgess, are Ritika Bhakhri and Matthew Fortune, both of Precinct 1, Marcus Chiaretto and Patrick Sadlon of Precinct 2, Rocco Giordano, Julian Poplawski, Gabriel Schmitt and Nathan Turowsky of Precinct 3, Brandon Graham, Akshay Kapoor and Hayley Mandeville of Precinct 4 and Renee Barouxis of Precinct 6.
Before certifying the results, election officials are waiting to see whether any write-in candidates emerge or if provisional ballots change the tallies.
UMass students who didn’t win election were Garrett Gowen and Sean O’Connor of Precinct 7 and Willis Chen and Frank Jackson of Precinct 10.
In addition, Daniel Rivera of Precinct 5, an Amherst College student who has previously served as a Town Meeting member, got a seat.
In the five precincts with contests, other residents who won seats included:
■ Daniel Kramer, Rebecca Lashua, Eric Nazar, James Perot, Deborah Timberlake and Jane Wald of Precinct 1;
■ Nelson Acosta, Charles Atwood, Dael Chapman, James Como, Thaddeus Dabrowski, Edward Harvey, Jeffrey Lee and Karen Lennon of Precinct 7;
■ Susan Connor-Kirshbaum, Mindy Domb, Elaine Fronhofer, John Kick, Eleanor Manire-Gatti, Janet McGowan, Fred Moseley and Sigurd Nilsen of Precinct 8;
■ Gavin Andresen, Denise Barberet, Joan Burgess, Jan Eidelson, Ben Grosscup, Jerry Guidera Jr., Mark Kosarick and Taryn LaRaja of Precinct 9; and
■ Rolf Karlstrom, John Michaels, Regina Rheault, Patricia Stacey, Jennifer Taub, Priscilla White and Elizabeth Windrover of Precinct 10.
Alisa Brewer of 5 Fairfield St. won a third term as a member of the Select Board, while James Wald of 454 Old Montague Road earned a second term.
Richard Blake Hood of 28 Farmington Road was voted into a second three-year term on School Committee, while newcomer Kathleen Traphagen of 496 South East St. won the other three-year position.
James Pistrang of 41 High Point Drive won a one-year term as moderator, taking over for Harrison Gregg, who announced his retirement from the post last fall.
Robert Pam of 229 Amity St. was elected to continue in a three-year term as a Jones Library trustee after being appointed to a vacancy last year. A second candidate for a vacant three-year seat, Jonathan McCabe of 57 Glendale Road, was running as a write-in candidate for the other three-year position.
John Coull of 20 Sheerman Lane won another one-year term as Elector under the Oliver Smith Will, and Margaret Roberts of 2 Hills Road was supported for another five-tear term on the Amherst Redevelopment Authority.