Editor’s note: The Easton Courier asked candidates to submit a profile and statement discussing three top issues facing Easton and how the candidate will help address them. Whendi Cook Broderick, Democratic candidate for Town Clerk, submitted the following response.
Whendi Cook Broderick is a seven-year Easton resident whose paralegal work has focused on real estate transactions, land records research, environmental law, and non-profit support.
This work, combined with her experience as a compliance director, notary public, and justice of the peace, makes her a strong candidate for the role of Town Clerk. Broderick has also been a trusted educator and community-developer in a variety of programs, ranging from early-childhood learning through post-graduate study in the arts, outdoor education, psychology, and oral traditions.
Broderick’s understanding of group processes and optimization of experience contributes to her capacity to serve as Town Clerk with openness and effectiveness. Highly regarded for her integrity, responsiveness, and impartiality, Broderick currently serves as a Co-Chair of the Easton Diversity and Inclusion Task Force, a bi-partisan committee appointed by the Board of Selectmen to promote understanding and belonging among all people in the community.
The people of Easton and the Secretary of State entrust the Town Clerk with responsibilities defined by the Code of the Town of Easton and the General Statutes of Connecticut. The Clerk serves as our public information officer: maintaining and providing access to public records, vital statistics, and licenses; making local government documents available in an accurate and timely manner; issuing certificates of authority and oaths of office; and participating in aspects of local elections.
With respect to this role, I see three vital areas that need focus: diligence, integrity, and impartiality. Diligence is paramount in our Town Clerk, who serves as a liaison between local government and the public. Residents count on the Clerk’s office to safeguard documents and to process them appropriately. They expect and deserve to have confidence that their town business will not be disrupted or impeded. On any occasion where errors or omissions occur, prompt and transparent remedies should be made. If transactions aren’t managed forthrightly, faith in the Clerk’s office and in municipal processes can be degraded.
My strong work ethic, attention to detail, and understanding of the bigger picture provide assurance of high-level, reliable service. My resolve and clear communication contribute to healthy, trustworthy operations. Integrity is fundamental in a thriving community – in both the dealings of the Clerk’s office and in the quality of community relations. Public service is a public trust. If there is any question as to the ethical handling of civic business, distrust and division can grow. If any resident feels alienated from the Town Clerk’s office, non-participation in local activities can be an unfortunate consequence.
I’ve demonstrated a longstanding commitment to attentiveness and responsiveness. Discernment and prudence guide every aspect of my work. These qualities cultivate trust and interconnectedness that add intrinsic value to local governance. Impartiality is essential, and an expressed facet of the job requirements for public servants as outlined in the Easton Code and the Ethics Ordinance.
My commitment to fulfilling the role of Town Clerk includes maintaining independent judgment with respect to the position, as well as avoiding situations that might be seen as exercising unwarranted influence or benefit. Such evenhandedness is enhanced by encouraging community engagement through dissemination of accurate information and timely outreach to residents. An informed and engaged citizenry can yield more productive dialogue with more tangible positive results for our town.
A widely held concern among members of the community is the strong desire to preserve Easton’s character. Being good stewards of our watershed and local zoning are crucial. So, too, are mutual respect and care, authenticity, and honesty. If elected, I pledge to support these values and to serve all residents with dedication, diligence, integrity, and impartiality.