My life has been an eastward migration from bungalows in Breezy Point and the Rockaways, to West Islip, Fire Island and now Sag Harbor.
I remember Reynolds Channel and the Great South Bay, where wide marshes and high grasses grew and clam boats dotted every shallow shoreline. Jones and Robert Moses beaches had endless sweeps of sand and dunes. Potato farms surrounded our streets, and blueberries and strawberries filled fields alongside the LIE before it was the LIE.
Our Fire Island community rebuilt our dunes almost yearly. Pollutants and algae transformed our bays and decimated shellfish populations. With each year, more powerful and numerous hurricanes hit, destroying homes, roads and beaches.
Today, the beauty and health of this place we love is threatened.
The five Southampton Town Democratic Trustee candidates running on November 2 will preserve and protect our land, waterways and fishing traditions. Their science-based talent and life experience is what we need now more than ever.
Martha Reichert grew up in Montauk in a boat-building, marina-owning family. She served as counsel to the Southampton Town Trustees and is deeply committed to developing sustainable practices and policies in support of local marine traditions. A lifelong environmentalist, Martha works to counter the effects of climate change, sea level rise and threats to our water quality.
Raised on a boat, Will Peckham brings a lifetime of experience on the water. Will joined other oyster fishermen opening his own business in North Sea, where he now employs four people. When the pandemic hit, he donated his harvest to local food banks and now sells oysters to East End and Manhattan restaurants.
Andrew Brosnan has captained research vessels for SUNY Southampton for more than 10 years. Daily ocean trips make him an environmental advocate with deep scientific understanding of our local marine environment. He helped bring successful public-awareness campaigns to our community through Surfrider, resulting in recent bans of plastic straws and polystyrene food containers.
Our two incumbents bring decades of life experience to the job of Trustee. Ann Welker is a lifelong resident and environmentalist dedicated to preserving our ponds, bays and ocean waters. She is committed to preserving beach access and local maritime traditions and exploring innovative techniques. She joins other members of the public learning to raise oysters from seed in the town facility.
Longtime East Ender Bill Pell earned his living at Pellâ€™s Fish Market and Dock and has been fishing, boating and enjoying these waters for more than 40 years.
Please join me and vote for these great candidates on November 2.
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