CONCORD—An emotional Gary Eppolito thanked members of the Concord Town Board, the community and the town staff at his last meeting as Concord Supervisor on Dec. 14. Eppolito is retiring after serving 12 years in the position.
“As this is my last meeting as Concord Town Supervisor, I just want to say it has been a privilege to serve the residents of Concord for the past 12 years,” Eppolito said. “Looking back over that time, I must say I have been truly blessed with a group of councilmen who have worked with me, often taking on responsibilities above what I consider the call of duty.”
Both Brenda O’Neil and Mary Jane Miess thanked Eppolito for his service. Miess, who has voiced her unhappiness with operations at the Senior Center, thanked Eppolito for his conversations and work. O’Neil, who works for Rural Transit, gave a heartfelt thank-you for everything Eppolito has done.
“[He] has done so much for the organization,” she said. “He has lead the group fantastically, when it came to Rural Transit … [Eppolito] was fantastic.”
Eppolito served as the chairman of Rural Transit’s advisory board. He plans to serve on the Board of Directors after his retirement.
“He helped recruit volunteers, he helped with policy … he has just done so much,” O’Neil said.
She then presented him with a certificate of appreciation for his work.
“[Rural Transit] is a great service. I believe so strongly in what they do,” Eppolito said. “I would do anything to help you do what you do.”
Eppolito highlighted work accomplished during his tenure, including the Senior Center, which took roughly 10 years. He pointed, also, to the work being done on the Comprehensive Plan, bringing Mercy EMS to the town, helping renovate the Lucy Bensley Center and upgrading the town’s highway equipment.
“There are many more, but nothing could have taken place without a group of people working together,” Eppolito said. “None of these were my accomplishments – they were [the board’s] accomplishments.”
He finished by thanking his secretary and town bookkeeper, Denise Ciszak, without whom he said he would not have been successful.
“The individual I need to thank, and whom I will miss the most, is my secretary. Without a doubt, [Ciszak] is one of the best multitaskers whom I have ever had the privilege to work,” Eppolito said. “I don’t recall [her] ever having a bad day. It is truly a blessing to work with someone who truly loves her job. I have thoroughly enjoyed working with [Ciszak] the past 12 years and will miss her.”
Eppolito was elected Town Supervisor in 2005 after serving as both a trustee and as the mayor of Springville. He began his career as an elected official in 1979, as a member of the Springville Zoning Board of Appeals, before moving to the Village Board of Trustees in 1994. He was elected mayor in 1997, where he served until being elected supervisor.
“I must admit, my retirement is bittersweet as I know I will miss all of you,” he said. “I know in my heart it is the right thing for my health, my family and for the town as infusions of new blood often bring new ideas and enthusiasm.”
Clyde Drake will assume the supervisor position in January.