Southampton Town Board member and State Senate hopeful Tommy John Schiavoni announced this week that he has received three key endorsements in his bid to seek the Democratic nomination for the 1st District Senate seat.
Mr. Schiavoni, a Democrat from Sag Harbor, in a release issued this weekend said that he received endorsements from Southampton Town Supervisor Jay Schneiderman, East Hampton Town Supervisor Peter Van Scoyoc, and Shelter Island Town Supervisor Gerry Siller, all Democrats.
Mr. Schiavoni also opened a campaign office on Saturday in Port Jefferson — the hometown of Republican Kenneth P. LaValle, who holds the seat and announced earlier this year that he would not seek reelection in November.
“I’m happy to endorse Tommy John Schiavoni for state senator from the 1st Senatorial District,” Mr. Schneiderman was quoted as saying in the release. “When you work together with someone doing the people’s business, as I have worked together with Tommy John on the Southampton Town Council, you learn a lot about that person’s abilities and priorities. I know from this direct day-to-day experience that Tommy John Schiavoni has the talent and the energy to make an outstanding state senator.”
Mr. Van Scoyoc was also quoted as expressing his support in the release. “Tommy John Schiavoni is my choice to represent us in the New York State Senate,” he said. “Here on the East End, there’s nothing more important to us than our beautiful natural environment, especially our water quality. Tommy John and I have worked hard to keep our waters clean and to protect every other part of the East End’s environment. Tommy John advances wise policies across the board, and that’s why I’m supporting him for State Senate.”
Mr. Siller added, “I am proud to endorse Tommy John Schiavoni as the best candidate to be our state senator. What people do in and for their community tells us what we need to know about their suitability for public office. Tommy John’s life in education, as well as his service with the Sag Harbor Volunteer Fire Department and Sag Harbor Board of Education, and now his work on the Southampton Town Council, all demonstrate that devotion to the common good, which is just what we need in a state senator.”
Mr. Schiavoni said in the release that he was humbled by the support.
“It’s been an honor working with supervisors Schneiderman, Van Scoyoc and Siller over the years,” he said. “My campaign is proud of this support and the support of people all over Senate District 1. We opened our Port Jeff office with a good crowd and volunteers at the ready, and all of this exemplifies the fact that a run for office is always about the people a candidate represents. It is my intention to serve the communities of SD 1 and have their voices heard in Albany.”
Mr. Schiavoni was elected to his first four-year term on the Southampton Town Board in 2017 after working as a teacher in the Center Moriches School District for 30 years. He announced his intent to run for the senate seat in November.
Three other Democrats are seeking the nomination in addition to Mr. Schiavoni: Skyler Johnson, a 19-year-old Mount Sinai resident; Brookhaven Town Board member Valerie Cartwright; and Laura Ahearn, the executive director of Parents for Megan’s Law and the Crime Victims Center. A primary to decide the nomination will be held on June 23, according to party officials.
Mr. LaValle, who has served as the senator for the 1st District — which encompasses all of the East End and a good portion of eastern Brookhaven Town — for 44 years, announced in early January that he would not seek reelection. His term expires in December.
Republican State Assemblyman Anthony Palumbo of New Suffolk on the North Fork, announced his candidacy in early February and is the presumptive GOP candidate for the seat. He is not expected to face a primary. Mr. Palumbo was first elected to the 2nd District Assembly seat in 2013 and is currently serving his second term.