Letter to the Editor: ‘Belmont’s Poll Workers and Election Staff are Amazing’

Photo: Belmont poll workers this November.

To the editor:

Dear Neighbors and Belmont voters: 

While many Americans are focused on the results and change of power as a result of the Nov. 8 Presidential election, I call special attention to our fellow Belmont neighbors who served as election workers to guarantee the rightful exercise of our treasured right to vote. They did a fabulous job and need to be recognized for their work:

The official election results for Belmont have been finalized:

82.41 percent of Belmont’s voters cast ballots in the Nov. 8 election. That’s 14,691 residents – of whom more than 6,100 voted during the 11-day Early Voting period. The conclusion – a vigorously active electorate and even more amazing election workers and staff. We enjoyed expert assistance from many town departments, but most particularly the Police, Public Works, Fire, Library, Council on Aging, School Department, Facilities, Treasurer, Information Technology, Community Development, Selectmen’s office, even the Health Department. Lastly, the members of the press/media covering Belmont, each of our media outlets, got the word out to our residents to let them know the details of voting which really made a difference.

More than 115 election workers were trained and ready to go; 99 actually wound up working during the Early Voting Period or on election day itself along with the fantastic, hard-working staff of the Town Clerk’s office:

  • Rising before the sun to arrive at the polls by 6 a.m. and be open to voters by 7 a.m.;
  • Happily greeting every voter;
  • Checking in and out thousands of voters (14,691 to be exact), some routine, some needing extra help;
  • Researching voter information so voters who needed to go to a different precinct or community to vote could do so;
  • Helping voters who needed a little physical help or extra time;
  • Expertly responding to hundreds of phone calls from precinct election workers and voters from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. on Election Day and many days before and after;
  • Discreetly opening and tabulating more than 6,000 Early Voting ballots, while ensuring a secret ballot for voters;
  • Posting signs, now-famous blue arrows for Early Voting;
  • Giving up hours at home with family in the evenings and even holiday weekends;
  • Scheduling the workers like an air traffic controller;
  • Processing and mailing 1,300 absentee ballots, including those to members of the military and overseas citizens;
  • Registering  2,500 new voters since Jan. 1, 2016 and deleting many more so they could vote in their new communities;
  • Keeping everyone’s spirits buoyed, even when face-to-face with an angry voter when we made a mistake;
  • Closing out the polls, accounting for every ballots and all the legal requirements so we could post Belmont’s results to the website;
  • Hand counting 2,000 ballots for the state’s mandated Post-Election Audit when Belmont’s Precinct 2 was randomly selected, with fabulous result.
  • Most importantly, enjoying one another’s company and looking forward to working the next Belmont election.

We are extremely proud of the work these folks accomplished to make Belmont’s election a huge success with accurate results and we thank them sincerely for their efforts, their attitude and their willingness to participate so wonderfully in this open election process.  When you see them around town, we encourage you to thank them in person.

With thanks and in awe of: Janet Bauer, Ann Beaudoin, Bruce Bell, Lily Benderskaya, Will Bielitz, Walter Bishop, Deborah Blumberg, Dorothy Boyle, Terrence Boyle, Carolyn Bunyon, Mary Butler, Katherine Chaprales, Rick Chasse, Meg Cole, Melinda Comeau, Elaine Crisafi, Elaine Dalaklis, Nancy Davis, Peg Demeritt, Janet Demers, Sheila Doctoroff, Mary Dominguez, Marjory Doyle, Theodore Dukas, Hildy Dvorak, Brenda Dzierzeski, Ron Eckel, Mary Ehler, Naomi Ellenberg-Dukas,  Deborah Falvey, Eilen Farrell, Ernest Fay, Angleo Firenze, Jenna Flanagan, Mary Gavin, Andreas Geovanos, Angela Giovannangelo, Carolyn Geenberg, Suzanne Greenberg, Viktoria Haase, Jane Haverty, Steve Hodgdon, Eleanor Howe, Phil Hughes, Priscilla Hughes, Martha Jacovides, Michael Jacovides, Barbara Johnson, Frances June Jones, Ed Kazarian, Maura Kelley, Elizabeth Kenrick, Janice Knight, Loretta Kravitz, Charles R. Laverty, III, Katy Liang, Warren Logan, Theresa Lorden, Paula Lyons, Janet Macdonald, Anne Marie Mahoney, Patricia Maloney, Zenda Mancini, Ann Marinelli, Markar Markarian, Marshall McCloskey, Robert McKie, Joan McLaughlin, Charlotte Millman, Robin Moore, Gerard Morin, Michael Nasson, Linda Oates, Christine O’Neill, Diane Orfanos, Jennifer Page, Mary Paolillo, Cindy Papa, Dawn Perry, Judy Rizzo, Anne Rosenberg, Phil Rossoni, Brian Saper, Joseph Scali, Maryann Scali, Carolyn Scarbro, Ruth Scarfo, Catherine Sclafani, John Robert Scordino, Judy Singler, Barbara Skelley, Clare Stanley, Hope Stone, Elizabeth Sullivan, Matt Sullivan, Susan Sullivan, Michael Trainor, Paula Van Horn, Dolores Vidal, Wei Wang,  Michael Wissner and Catherine Zevitas.

Town Clerk Staff: Dan Cane, Nancy Casale and Meg Piccione.

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