Election 2019: Southold Town Board candidates


Four-year term, two open seats
Salary: $36,861

Jill Doherty

Hamlet: New Suffolk
Occupation: Town councilwoman, bookkeeper and office manager at Creative Environmental Design in Peconic
Party Lines: Republican, Conservative, Independence

About: Ms. Doherty, 55, is a longtime Southold resident and has two children in their 20s.

She was first elected to the Town Board in 2011 and is seeking a third term. Ms. Doherty previously worked as a clerk in Town Hall and served two terms on the Board of Trustees. She has been involved with the Mattituck Fire Department Ladies’ Auxiliary for nearly 30 years and volunteers her time bartending for several local organizations and fundraisers.

On the Town Board, Ms. Doherty serves as liaison to the town’s shellfish advisory and tree committees.

Her pitch: Ms. Doherty said her background in accounting and government give her a good sense of fiscal management on a town level. She said she has continued to advocate for environmental issues, including water quality, as a Town Board member and helped draft the rental code. If reelected, she said she wants to immediately get to work on creating the rental permit renewal process. Ms. Doherty said her approach to the issues allow her to consider how her decisions — especially updates to town code — may have broader impacts.

In her words: “I treat everybody fairly. I listen. I’m open and I know how to get things done. It might not be the vision that you come to me with, but I can point you in the right direction. I’m available and flexible. I’m committed to [the Town Board] and will stay committed to this.

Bob Hanlon

Hamlet: Orient
Occupation: Retired attorney and educator
Party Lines: Democratic

About: Mr. Hanlon, 72, has lived in Southold for 14 years with his wife, Jessica Frankel, who is a librarian at Southold Free Library.

He is a seven-year member of the Orient Association and served four years as its president. He is also a board member of the Oysterponds Historical Society and his term as a fire district commissioner in Orient will expire in December.

His pitch: Mr. Hanlon said his involvement in community organizations will make him an asset to the Town Board. With the Orient Association, Mr. Hanlon helped fight a plan by the New York Metropolitan Transportation Council to divert tractor trailers via ferry through the North Fork.

As a fire commissioner, Mr. Hanlon said he reviewed contracts to recoup $70,000 in unpaid cell tower fees.

Issues such as house size and water quality are at the top of his agenda, and Mr. Hanlon outlined several immediate steps the town could take to address those problems, including working with town planners and builders and mandating innovative/alternative wastewater systems on new construction projects in Southold.

In his words: “I have no agenda and don’t represent any particular group — I’m not a partisan person. My only concern is to try and find ways to try and take care of [Southold]. One thing I’ve learned in my various careers has served me well: listen to constituents and keep asking questions. The most important thing is listening to the community.”

Eugene Gluck

Hamlet: Southold
Occupation: Graphic designer, real estate agent
Party Lines: Libertarian

About: Mr. Gluck, 53, grew up in the Bronx and earned a BFA in fine art and graphic design from Southampton College. He then moved to the North Fork and has since served as the president of the North Fork Chamber of Commerce, executive director of the North Fork Promotion Council and treasurer of both the Cut-ch-ogue Lions Club and North Fork Environmental Council.

He has also been a member of the Third New York Regiment Long Island Companies reenactment group. He is the father of two adult daughters.

His pitch: Mr. Gluck said additional affordable housing opportunities are needed in order to maintain a viable workforce for local businesses. He’d like to see more fiscal responsibility and a smaller, more transparent government. Mr. Gluck said his taxes have doubled in the last 10 years and he’s concerned that the increases don’t always translate into more services.

Another key issue is transportation. He said more frequent and dependable train service is needed and believes the bus system could better serve the area on Route 48.

In his words: “I have a lot of experience, I know business owners. I’ve done a lot of work insofar as promoting tourism. I know that’s a touchy subject, but it can be handled in a way so it doesn’t compound the issues. I think there’s a lack of focus right now in Town Hall and I’d like to bring it back to these pertinent issues.”

Sarah Nappa

Hamlet: Southold
Occupation: Farmer, chef, small business owner
Party Lines: Democratic

About: Ms. Nappa, 38, has a degree in animal science and agricultural business from Colorado State University. She moved here in 2007 with her husband, Anthony, and has worked as a chef at several local restaurants before opening The Winemaker Studio in Peconic. Ms. Nappa and her husband are raising two young children on their 3-acre farm.

Her pitch: Ms. Nappa said her experience as a small business owner and farmer gives her insight into what isn’t working in town government. She said Southold is at a “tipping point” due to a lack of planning by the current administration. She’d work with small business owners and the farming community to make appropriate updates to the code and streamline processes to make them more efficient. Ms. Nappa also said that while preserving land is important, it’s equally important to ensure a thriving agricultural industry is in place to continue farming that land.

In her words: “I have education, knowledge and expertise in a lot of the key industries in Southold. I’ve been operating my own small business for over 10 years and I’ve had to adapt and change in order to stay viable.

I understand what the next generation of farmers is going to need to be able to make it here. I have fresh ideas and a new vision, and I’m willing to put in the work it’s going to take to get the code updated and make sure the future is secure.”

Bill Ruland

Hamlet: Mattituck
Occupation: Town councilman, farmer
Party Lines: Republican, Conservative, Independence

About: Mr. Ruland, 71, was first elected to the Town Board in 2007 and currently serves as deputy supervisor.

He is a lifelong Mattituck resident and previously served on the Mattituck-Cut-ch-ogue Board of Education for 24 years, including 13 as president. He is a third-generation farmer who serves as treasurer for the Long Island Cauliflower Association and is a past president of the Long Island Farm Bureau. He and his wife have two children and four grandchildren.

His pitch: Mr. Ruland’s commitment to public service has led him to seek a fourth term on the Town Board. Specifically, he said his experience in municipal finance, budgeting and labor relations give him the necessary skills for the position.

Citing his background in farming, Mr. Ruland said he wants to continue working to preserve agricultural lands from development.

Mr. Ruland also oversees the town’s fuel and fleet management program, which he said allows the town to better track data and cut costs where possible. He said there’s more to be done in that area to continue reducing costs and improving efficiency.

He serves as liaison or co-liaison to at least 10 other committees, including the agricultural advisory, transportation and economic development committees.

In his words: “I think my love and passion for the community I was born and raised in runs really deep, and I’m not ready to give up yet. I still think I have much to offer.”