Rockville Centre attorney Laura Gillen, who ran an unsuccessful campaign in 2013 for Nassau County clerk, is expected to be the Democratic candidate for Hempstead Town supervisor in November.
Nassau Democratic Party chairman Jay Jacobs said he expects to nominate Gillen, 47, who is counsel in the litigation department at the Uniondale law firm of Westerman Ball Ederer Miller & Sharfstein, at the party’s convention in May to run against Republican Town Supervisor Anthony Santino.
“I am currently meeting and listening to Hempstead taxpayers who, like me, are frustrated with the corruption, cronyism and lack of vision that has plagued our local government both at the town and county levels for years and who think we deserve better,” said Gillen, who has yet to announce her candidacy.
Jacobs described Gillen as an “excellent manager” who would “pare away the fat and patronage” in the Town of Hempstead.
Santino, a former town councilman, was elected in 2015 after then-Supervisor Kate Murray ran unsuccessfully for Nassau district attorney. Democrat Rita Kestenbaum ran unsuccessfully against Santino that year.
“Supervisor Santino is proud to to run on his record of cutting costs and reducing the size of government” said Santino spokesman Matt Coleman.
A Democrat has never been elected supervisor in Hempstead. However, Jacobs said “change is in the air” after the indictments of Nassau County Executive Edward Mangano and former Oyster Bay Town Supervisor John Venditto on federal corruption charges. Mangano and Venditto have pleaded not guilty.
In 2013, Gillen lost to County Clerk Maureen O’Connell, a Republican from East Williston, 57 percent to 43 percent.
Gillen is a graduate of Georgetown University and New York University’s School of Law. In 1995, she went on a volunteer mission in Calcutta and worked for a time in Mother Teresa’s home for the dying.
Nassau Democrats also are expected to select a candidate for Oyster Bay Town supervisor next week, Jacobs said.
Former Nassau Police Benevolent Association president James Carver, a registered Republican who had been mulling a run as a Democrat, is no longer under consideration by the party, Jacobs said.
Carver, 55, who retired last month as head of the Nassau PBA, said it would require “multiple” two-year terms to fix the town’s financial problems. “I’m at a time in my life where I don’t need to commit to that long term,” Carver said.
Former Assemb. Joseph Saladino, a Republican from Massapequa, was appointed Oyster Bay supervisor in January after Venditto’s resignation.
Democrats next week will pick a candidate for Saladino’s 9th District Assembly seat. The special election is May 23.