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Keith becomes town clerk/tax collector, Grabarek and Zachem join board of selectmen in Preston

Preston — Democrat Gerald Grabarek and Republican Kenneth Zachem were elected to the Board of Selectmen, joining First Selectwoman-elect Sandra Allyn-Gauthier in what is an all-new board. Grabarek served on the board from 1995 to 2009, while Zachem is new but spent 34 years on other town boards.

Republican First Selectman Robert Congdon didn't seek reelection after 24 years in the office, nor did selectmen Lynwood Crary or Michael Sinko. Congdon was elected to fill a four-year vacancy on the Board of Finance, while Republican John Moulson was elected to fill a two-year vacancy. The top vote-getters for a full, six-year term on the board were Democrat Denise Beale and Republican Andy Depta.

The appointments for vacancies are effective Wednesday while the winners of other races will be sworn into office in two weeks.

The exception is Republican Jill Keith, who defeated Democrat Leigh Pappas for the Town Clerk/Tax Collector seat. Hattie Wucik is retiring after 27 years in the position, and she will be in office until Jan. 6.

Keith, who works as an independent contractor doing real estate title searches, said her top priorities are making sure the town is current with technology, getting the land records online, and making the system user-friendly.

Democrats Sean Nugent and Deborah Burke-Grabarek and Republican Daniel Harris were reelected to the Board of Education, while Republican Thomas Turner was not. George Carver III ran unopposed to fill the two-year vacancy on the board, and Town Treasurer Susan Nylen was unopposed in reelection for her position.

e.moser@theday.com

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