South Hadley incumbents Miles, Etelman keep Select Board seats




  • Andrea Miles, left, and Sarah Etelman were reelected Tuesday to the the South Hadley Select Board.

Staff Writer
Published: 3/3/2020 11:27:45 PM

SOUTH HADLEY — Select Board incumbents Sarah Etelman and Andrea Miles will retain their seats after victories in a contested race with former School Committee Chairman John Kelly.

According to unofficial results from the town clerk’s office, Etelman received 3,078 votes, Miles received 2,873 votes and Kelly received 1,861 votes, with the top two vote-getters winning election.

Etelman has served on the Select Board for seven years, making her its longest-serving member. Miles was elected in 2017 and is the Select Board’s current chairwoman. The two ran a joint campaign for reelection, citing their experience and a collaborative dynamic among the current board.

Speaking with the Gazette, Etelman said she was “thrilled” at learning she’d been reelected.

“I am excited as we continue to move South Hadley forward, and I am proud of this board, how it works well together and with the town administrator,” Etelman said. “I look forward to an exciting few years.”

Miles characterized the reelection as “a culmination of the last three years worth of work” that she and Etelman have done on the board, adding that being reelected alongside Etelman was “the best part” of winning.

“I think it wouldn’t have felt right if it was just me or just her,” Miles said. “It feels really good to be able to continue on with our board as a whole.

“It’s been a couple years since we had the same board two years in a row,” she said, “and I really like the dynamic that we have, so I’m encouraged that we have at least another year to finish the work that we’ve started this year.”

Outside of South Hadley High School, the town’s only polling location, volunteers and candidates held signs endorsing local and national candidates during the afternoon.

Volunteer Debbie Boehner campaigned for Miles and Etelman outside of the high school, noting that the two candidates are “already on the Select Board doing an amazing job.”

“She and Andrea have shown good judgment,” Boehner said, “and I trust them to keep making good decisions.”

Boehner said that voter engagement seemed to be high, noting that the parking lot to South Hadley high school had been packed all day.

Volunteer Joanne Jackson campaigned for Kelly outside of the high school, noting that she was impressed by him when she watched the Know Your Town candidates forum, adding that she saw a need for “some kind of new blood” on the board.

There was also a contested race for a member of Town Meeting in Precinct D, according to an earlier specimen ballot.  No other races were contested, although the Board of H ealth and Planning Board also had write-in candidates vying for a seat. Results for these races were not available at by press deadline.

Turnout for the election was 38 percent of registered voters, with 4,540 residents voting out of 11,981 voters total.

Jacquelyn Voghel can be reached at

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