We want to share DTC Vice Chair Ann Reed’s insightful piece in the Darien Times this week asking the political parties (the RTC in particular) to keep their hands off of our schools.
The Darien DTC could not agree more,and pledges not to inject partisan politics into the Board of Education. We have never told Democratic Board of Education members how to vote on an issue, or who to vote for to lead the Darien Board of Education, and we do not intend to start now. We nominate outstanding candidates and then let them do their job for all Darien schoolchildren, parents and residents. 
The Darien DTC is not running Michael Burke and Sara Parent’s campaign for Board of Education. We have contributed to it and we support it, but the campaign is an independent entity – as we expect Mike and Sara to be as Board of Education members. Ask whether the Republican candidates can say the same.
Please support Mike & Sara in this contested race for the Board of Education with your votes and with your donations:
David Bayne
Darien DTC Chair
(203) 984-9679

Darien Times Op-Ed by Ann Reed

As a resident of Darien, I appreciate our public schools and the link between the quality of that system and home values in our town. I have spent hours in Board of Education meetings for various town groups. As a result, I have endless respect for those individuals who serve as members. Last week, the Republican Town Committee published their platform for their Board of Education candidates. As I was reading it, I was struck that it espouses things that are false. It talks about “Act(ing) transparently with regard to budget priorities.” However, it was a group of Republican Board of Education members who held a secret caucus to discuss the budget last spring. While that caucus may have been legal, it was certainly not transparent.
Darien parents and residents should want members of the Board of Education to be independent, collaborative and to bring thoughtful, considered ideas to the Board table. The ideal Board member stands up for what they believe is best for our town’s children and does not just parrot the party line dictated by the Republican Town Committee, who are neither education nor policy experts.
The Republican platform uses the following language: “Protect and promote curriculum that emphasizes the ways in which western civilization and the American system have protected, enriched and elevated lives, while ensuring students are instilled with an understanding of the importance of social consciousness, community involvement and their responsibility to be inclusive and strive for continuous improvement.”
While this language is dressed up to sound like admirable goals, its cultural insensitivity and dark undertone echo the “culture war” themes being stoked by the Trump Administration. The Town of Darien and its school system are better than that.
Other parts of the platform talk about “Autonomy and local control – Darien First.” This is to make sure their voters know they are against regionalization. To be clear, no current Democratic Board of Education member has ever supported regionalization, and the Democratic newcomer on the ballot testified against regionalization in Hartford. To their point of “Darien First,” are they saying they want Darien to give up any and all state funding in order to be accountable solely to Darien residents? Are those residents ready to be solely responsible for fully funding our schools?
Differing viewpoints are worthwhile and necessary. Open and frank discussion among Board members often results in growth and development in our schools, but the political parties and their ideologies should keep their hands off of our schools.
Darien needs thoughtful candidates with their own ideas. The Darien Democratic Town Committee has never told a Board of Education member how to vote and pledges never to do so in the future. Can the Darien Republican Town Committee make the same claim?

Ann Reed is the vice chairman of the Democratic Town Committee.

Below  is a letter from CT Democratic Party Chair Nancy Wyman regarding the presidential primary.

 

February 3, 2020

 

Dear Connecticut Democratic Party Leaders and Members:

 

With the start of voting in the 2020 Presidential primaries only hours away, I write to wish you well in supporting the candidate of your choice. But I also want to remind Democrats across the state that we have one singular and common goal – defeating Donald Trump on November 3rd.

 

It has been a long three years since the 2016 Presidential election. But Democrats have pulled together behind remarkable candidates in Connecticut and across the country to regain local offices, state legislatures, as well as U.S. Senate and Congressional seats. And this year, we have an outstanding field of barrier-breaking and well-qualified candidates for President.

 

As we move into the final months of choosing a candidate for President, I ask every Democrat in Connecticut to remember what is at stake: the future of our nation. Democrats are the party of inclusion, the party that cares about affordable accessible health care and saving the planet from global warming. We are the party of solutions, not barriers.

 

As a veteran of more Democratic elections and party battles than I can count, I am asking every Democrat in the state to support their candidates with respect for one another and an eye on November. And I am asking every Democrat to join me in a commitment to support whichever candidate is victorious at the end of this primary season.  

 

I think we all can agree that any one of the Democrats on the ticket will restore dignity and confidence in the Oval Office.

 

Together, we can win the White House.

 

All my best,

 

 

Nancy Wyman

Chair

https://www.darientimes.com/opinion/article/Letter-Fourth-Congressional-District-fortunate-14994916.php

To the Editor:

The news from Washington, D.C. is overwhelming. It seems that every day there is more news about this dangerous president who continues to find ways to abuse his power for personal gain, obstruct justice, and much more. Then there is the constant barrage of impeachment news and tweets by this president who is not focused on the welfare of the people he was elected to serve.

However, we are fortunate that there are elected officials who are concerned with the welfare of the people they were elected to serve and they serve in the House of Representatives. Congress has been busy passing over 400 bills, with 250 of those bills passing with bipartisan majorities. One member in particular continues to lead in doing the work to get the job done for the American people, Congressman Jim Himes.

Understanding that voting is a right for all Americans and the opportunity to vote should be easily accessible, Jim voted for HR 1 to expand voting rights. Every day, Americans are struggling to pay for necessary medications and their health care, recognizing these challenges Jim voted for HR 3 to lower prescription drug prices and voted for HR 986 to protect coverage for preexisting conditions. After Sandy Hook, little progress has been made nationally to keep us safe from gun violence; Jim voted for HR 8 to require universal background checks. As the president continues to deny climate change, Jim Himes voted for HR9 to ensure America stays in the Paris Climate Agreement and to take steps to address climate change. Jim continues to fight to repeal the SALT deduction cap.

Unfortunately, Mitch McConnell refuses to take up these bills in the Senate. By refusing to do the work the members of the Senate were elected to do, Americans continue to struggle.

We, in the Connecticut Fourth Congressional District, are fortunate to have Congressman Jim Himes represent us. He has proven time after time that he is a strong, thoughtful leader committed to the welfare of those he was elected to serve.

Evonne M. Klein

Darien

https://www.darientimes.com/news/article/Darien-Democrats-hold-caucus-name-new-committee-14983506.php

 

On Jan. 14, 2020, registered Darien Democrats caucused at the Town Hall Auditorium to elect the next Darien Democratic Town Committee (“DTC”) for a two year term commencing March 4, 2020.

Current Town Committee Chairman David Bayne chaired the caucus. After calling the caucus to order, the DTC Search Committee’s slate of 20 persons was nominated and seconded. Nominations were then taken from the floor and three additional persons were nominated and seconded for positions on the 2020-22 DTC. Nominations were then closed and all persons nominated were unanimously elected by a voice vote.

The members of the 2020-2022 Darien Democratic Town Committee are:

Frank Adelman

David Bayne

Sean Bunoski

Francisco Cardona

John “JC” Carter

Christine Castles

Loren Gomez

Susan Gray

Elizabeth Hall

David Maloof

Dan Nalawade

Wyatt Piedra

Margaret Rague

Ann Reed

Rob Richards

Glenn Ritch

Jean Sweeney

Sharad Samy

Danica Tarin

David Tarin

Barbara Thorne

Cecil Wade

Lisa Yarnell

 

To all registered Democrats of Darien, Connecticut:

According to the rules of the Democratic Party and state election laws, a caucus of registered Democrats will be held on January 14, 2020 at 8:00 p.m. at the Darien Town Hall Auditorium, 2 Renshaw Road, Darien, CT 06820 to endorse candidates for the 2020 Darien Democratic Town Committee and to transact such other business that may properly come before the caucus.

Dated:  December 26, 2019

            Darien, CT

                                                                        Darien Democratic Town Committee

                                                                        David F. Bayne, Chairman

Town Mourns Loss of Marc Thorne (Darien Times)

 

The Town of Darien flag will be flown at half-staff in memory of Darien resident and former selectman Marc Thorne, who died Monday after suffering a severe stroke early Sunday morning.

In an email sent Monday afternoon to town officials, First Selectman Jayme Stevenson wrote Thorne “will be remembered for his kind and thoughtful nature, being the consummate gentleman, and his deep commitment to the Town of Darien.”

“Marc and Barbara have been such an inspiration to us all,” Stevenson added.

Thorne, a Democrat, devoted his life to public and community service. He served as a town selectman from 2015 through the most recent election.

In addition, he served on the RTM Finance & Budget Committee, the Consolidated Services Working Group, and the Pear Tree Point Beach Building Committee.

He was also active with the Darien Men’s Association since 2004, most recently serving on its Community Service Committee.

He was a member of the First Congregational Church of Darien.

Former First Selectman Evonne Klein said Thorne was a “kind, thoughtful gentleman who was the voice of encouragement.”

“He was the person who strove to understand others and ultimately, he did. Because of this ability to do so, he was able to make a positive difference in the lives of his family, friends and as a distinguished public servant,” Klein said. “My family and I have some terrific memories, we will miss Marc.”

Democratic Town Committee Chairman David Bayne said Thorne’s decades of service to Darien are “an inspiration to us all.”

“His leadership and service in town government, the Democratic party, his church and in the Senior Men’s Association are unparalleled,” Bayne said.

Bayne continued, “Marc gave so much of himself — not out of personal ambition, but because he genuinely enjoyed helping people and he wanted to make Darien a better place.”

“By all accounts, he was wildly successful in those goals, and our entire community is far richer for his efforts,” Bayne said.

Bayne added Thorne was a friend “who could be counted on to lend a hand or have a kind and thoughtful word of encouragement when you needed it most. My wife Carolyn and I will miss him very much.”

Addressing Barbara Thorne, Bayne said, on behalf of the entire DTC, “we join you in your grief and are profoundly grateful that you shared Marc with us for so many decades. Thank you, Barbara. We are here for you.”

For many years, Thorne was seen by many in front of Palmer’s Market on Heights Road, where he ran the Salvation Army bell. He would organize a group of volunteers to help with this effort.

Norwalk resident George Gilliam, a member of the Darien Men’s Association, said Thorne “was very much dedicated to making Darien a good a town as it could possibly be.”

Thorne is a former president of the DMA. Most recently, he headed the DMA Cares Committee, which sends condolence cards to members who are not well.

In each card, there’s a saying that Gilliam said is very fitting for Thorne.

“The example you set, the leadership you’ve shown, and the inspiration that you are — that would describe Marc,” he said.

Thorne’s funeral is scheduled for Saturday, Dec. 21 at 3 p.m. at The First Congregational Church of Darien, 14 Brookside Road.