ABOVE: David Martin supporters at the Democratic City Committee’s nominating convention Wednesday.
STAMFORD — The Democratic City Committee enthusiastically nominated David Martin as its mayoral candidate Wednesday, giving the longtime local politician a second shot at the city’s top office.
Martin, who ran unsuccessfully for mayor against Republican Michael Pavia in 2009, easily captured the endorsement of his party in a 26-12 vote that put him ahead of District 147 state Rep. William Tong. A third Democratic candidate, former Stamford public safety director Bill Callion, received two votes.
“Over the last four years Republicans on the 10th floor (of city hall) have short-changed the citizens of Stamford,” Martin told his fellow party members in his speech accepting their nomination. “We as Democrats now have a lot of ground to make up. From potholes to crime in our neighborhoods, from the firefighters to the WPCA. The way we respond to these issues is going to shape Stamford for years to come.”
Tong, who has raised more than a quarter of a million dollars for his campaign since entering the race in February, said he plans to challenge Martin for his spot on the ballot. The primary election is scheduled for Sept. 10.
“We’re excited for the primary ahead,” Tong said. “Across the city we know Democrats overwhelmingly support us; in polling, in donations. We move forward in the primary with a great deal of confidence. As my constituents in District 147 know, we run strong and we run to win.”
DCC Chairman John Mallozzi said Martin’s three decades of experience on the Board of Representatives and Board of Finance convinced the Party that he was the strongest candidate for mayor.
“He knows every detail of city government,” Mallozzi said. “He’ll start right away working on Day 1. Not that the other two were not capable of doing the job, (the committee) just had a different emphasis on the background they wanted.”
The committee also voted Wednesday to endorse a long list of candidates for the Boards of Education, Finance and Representatives during its nominating convention at the Sheraton Hotel on East Main Street. The party’s education and finance board candidates are as follows:
Board of Education: Democrats can only win two seats on the nine-member board this November.
Geoff Alswanger, an incumbent who has sat on the Board of Education since 2010 and currently serves as the board’s president.
Richard Lyons, an incumbent who has sat on the Board of Education since 2010.
Dolores Burgess, who ran for the board in 2012 and received the second-highest number of votes but was kept off due to party-representation restrictions.
Board of Finance: Democrats can win only one seat on the six-member board this November.
Richard Freeman, a former Board of Education member and president of Garden Homes Management Corporation.
Althea Brown, a political newcomer and community director of the Waterside Coalition.
Mike Buccino, a political newcomer.
Check back Thursday for a full list of the Republican and Democrats’ chosen contenders for the 40-member Board of Representatives. The Advocate will have full coverage of Martin’s nomination in Friday’s paper.
*This post has been corrected to reflect the accurate vote tally for the mayoral nomination.