Displaying items by tag: meg kelly

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SARATOGA SPRINGS — Meg Messitt, an ambitious freshman at Saratoga Springs High School, decided last summer that her political point of view needed to be represented in her high school. Along with two friends her age, Jason Schwartz and Paul Sheehan, Messitt and the boys spent their summer writing their new proposed clubs constitution. Messitt explained that she has always been interested in politics, starting with watching Fox News at a young age and continuing to do so well into her teen years.

“I was really excited to start this club, it got me even more engaged with politics. We wanted to express conservative values more, we thought there wasn’t a big voice of conservative ideas in Saratoga schools. We noticed that lessons tended to be from the democratic view point. So, we started this club, so the conservative values could be heard,” Messitt explained.

The clubs’ first meeting took place in November, appointing Messitt as president, Schwartz as treasurer, and Sheehan as vice president. So far, the club has attracted 30 members.

“We were surprised to see how many kids came and we’re expecting the numbers to grow, so we’re really excited to see how the club turns out,” Messitt said.

Along with the club serving as a place for young republicans to gather, it was also created to serve as a community service based club. The club participated in Adopt-A-Soldier in December, they sent out a package to a soldier on the Red Sea.

“The members of our club donated stuff and then we sent out the care package to the soldier,” she explained.

Items included nonperishable foods, Christmas decorations, magazines, and items the soldiers wouldn’t normally have on a ship. The club also intends to lay wreaths at the Saratoga National Cemetery, are planning a food drive, and are looking to meet up with local law enforcement.

“We are going to have a meet and greet with law enforcement to honor them, get to know them better, and see what they do,” Messitt stated.

Messitt has been in contact with a local police officer already. The club also has Senator James Tedisco lined up to speak to them on Thursday, Jan. 18.


“I feel that the current political climate is full of anger and hate. There is a lot of intolerance for people with different political beliefs. Political diversity is often unwelcomed, and we should respect people with different political beliefs,” she said.

On what it means to be a Republican, Messitt said, “we believe that there are equal rights for everyone.”

“People look at each other and if they hold a different political belief then they don’t like that person and judge them because of their differences. So maybe instead of thinking that way, we should listen to them and hear their side and even though you don’t agree with them, you can still be friends with them. I feel there should be more acceptance for political diversity,” she explained passionately.

Matthew Taylor, a senior and former intern on the newlyappointed Mayor Meg Kelly’s campaign, is ready to change the political climate at Saratoga Springs High School.

“One morning the Republican Club announced they were having a meeting and, so I decided to create a Young Democrats Club, because there should be a club for democrats as well,” Taylor explained.

The Young Democrats will hold their first meeting in January and have already garnered a lot of interest within the school. Sara Zlotnick has been appointed the clubs vice president.

“Action is needed, so that’s what we’re looking to do, raise money for not for profits in our area and make a difference in our community. This is the first charter of the Young Democrats in Saratoga County,” Taylor said.

Taylor has been very politically engaged throughout his life and began dipping his toes into the career end of things this past summer by interning on the Meg Kelly mayoral campaign.

“We obviously won, so that was great. I attended the meetings we had, made a lot of phone calls, a lot of knocking on doors, which is how you win elections. Also, a lot of communicating and keeping the spirits high,” he said.

Interning helped him to learn the amount of work that goes into a campaign, how even simple things like knocking on doors is critical to success.

Taylor considers Kelly’s campaign to be a success because “we were passionate about the issues and we ran on that and worked hard.”

Taylor intends to go to college for political science, he will be attending George Washington University in the fall of 2018. The 2016 election season, and the subsequent outcome, was what sparked Taylor’s initiative to become more involved and aware of the political climate around him.

In reference to the current political world we live in, Taylor finds it “saddening. It’s so contentious and there is so much divide and such a lack of communication. That’s why I want my club to be a very inclusive environment. We may be the Young Democrats Club, but you don’t have to be a staunch democrat to be part of the club.

Our main goal is to make a difference in our community,” he said passionately.

Taylor intends to open any public figure discussions that happen within his group the Republican Club as well.

“I think that we’ve come so far from listening to one another that we instantly hear republican, or democrat, or conservative, or liberal and we instantly are turned off. I’ve caught myself doing that as well and I think that needs to end, because everyone has different views,” Taylor stated.

When asked what being a Democrat meant to him, he simply stated, “to be a Democrat, I say you believe in social equality, you believe in helping those less fortunate than you.”

Both clubs have expressed an interest in working together to show others that it is not always about your political affiliation but how you treat people for being people.

Published in Education
Tuesday, 28 November 2017 13:20

City Mayor-Elect Meg Kelly Announces Deputy

SARATOGA SPRINGS - Mayor-Elect Meg Kelly has announced that she will appoint Lisa Shields to be Deputy Mayor, effective Jan. 1, 2018. 

Shields has been Executive Assistant to Mayor Joanne Yepsen since August 2016.

“Lisa’s leadership is already at work in the Mayor’s Office,” Kelly said, in a statement. “Her organization and communications skills have improved our responsiveness and readiness to move our priorities forward.  These contributions will leverage a smooth transition for us, and as deputy, Lisa will continue to lead process improvements within our department, help to build consensus for our agenda throughout City Hall, and ensure that the highest level of service represents of all the work we will do in my administration.”

Shields is a graduate of South Glens Falls High School and holds a bachelor’s degree in computer science from SUNY Potsdam.  She began her career as an IT professional for Hewlett-Packard in California, working as a system engineer, network design consultant, and account executive in the financial, entertainment and aerospace industries.  She also served on the board of Ascension Lutheran School in CA and in several IT roles.

Since moving back to New York in 2006, Shields has worked in various administrative and IT support roles for the Saratoga Springs United Methodist Church, Mannix Marketing in Glens Falls and Saratoga Children’s Theatre, which was founded by Meg Kelly, where Shields also served on its board.  For the Saratoga Springs School District, she worked for three years as producer of the high school drama club. She and her husband Dan have three children and live in Saratoga Springs.

Published in News

SARATOGA SPRINGS - At precisely seven minutes after 11 on the night of Nov. 7, Meg Kelly was declared winner as the 21st mayor of the city of Saratoga Springs.

“I have so much to be grateful for,” Kelly told an exuberant crowd at the Inn at Saratoga where her fellow Democrats congregated election night. “I have a crew that has worked endless hours, with a limited budget, and we killed it.”

Members of the Republican Party were stationed directly across the street at the Holiday Inn, where a near-life size cardboard figure of President Donald Trump greeted all who entered. 

Kelly, currently the city’s deputy mayor, will begin her two-year-term Jan. 1, 2018. She defeated Republican candidate Mark Baker 4,630 - 3,911, or by a 54.13 percent to 45.73 percent margin. There were 8,742 ballots cast in the mayoral race. 

Voters also elected Democrat Peter Martin as commissioner of public safety. Martin - currently one of two supervisors representing the city at the county level – defeated Republican Donald Braim by a narrow 4,217 to 4,021 margin, and Democrat Francine Vero bested Republican challenger Andrew Blumenberg by a wide margin for the city judgeship.

In the vote to elect two city supervisors, 8,724 ballots were cast. Republican incumbent Matt Veitch - with 28.76 percent of the vote, and Democrat Tara Gaston – with 24.3 percent of the vote, were chosen to serve the city. Democrat Pat Friesen (22.94 percent), Republican John Safford (22.39 percent), and Green Party candidate Joseph Levy (1.56 percent) finished out of the running.   

Republican DPW Commissioner Anthony “Skip” Scirocco, and Democrats John Franck, accounts commissioner, and Michele Madigan, finance commissioner, were each re-elected in uncontested races for City Council seats. Between 243 and 295 votes were cast in the three uncontested races for write-in candidates, garnering approximately four to five percent of the overall tally in each race. The names of those write-in candidates will be documented and made public later this month, according to the Saratoga County Board of Elections.       

Kelly vowed to preserve the greenbelt, fix the city’s parking issues, and work collaboratively with the council’s four other members.

Current city Mayor Joanne Yepsen, who chose not to run for re-election, reminisced Tuesday about the night she first secured elected office by becoming the city supervisor in the 2005 election.   

"Twelve years ago, I stood in this room and accepted my first job in public service," Yepsen recalled. Since announcing her decision to not seek re-election as mayor, there has been much public speculation about her future political plans.    

"There will be no formal announcement this evening," Yepsen said. Asked whether she is keeping the proverbial door open to a political run in the future, Yepsen replied, "I'll always have an eye on how to help people more, always an eye on the political landscape."

Residents also voted in favor of changing the city’s Commission form of governing 4,202 to 4,154, but the miniscule margin of victory requires absentee ballots be counted. The county Board of Elections mailed 711 such absentee ballots and those returned by Nov. 14 will be counted on Tuesday, when a clear winner may be determined. 

Published in News