City Halls Municipal Elections are Soon to Begin and Malden is Ready to Vote

All candidates running with opposition were contacted for this article.

As autumn marches onwards, election season approaches quickly. Civil engagement is a crucial aspect of maintaining a democratically elected government. From school boards to the POTUS, every election counts.

One of the smaller and more overlooked elections is that of Municipal elections. Election Day falls on November 7th, when Malden citizens can fulfill their 15th Amendment right to vote.

The first category of contested seats for City Council is Councillor-at-Large. There are three seats, currently occupied by incumbents Craig Spadafora, Karen Colón Hayes, and Carey McDonald, all of whom are seeking re-election. The fourth candidate is the only non-incumbent, Dante Diserio, who gained popularity while collecting ballot signatures. According to the Advocate, he “holds the distinction of collecting the most verified nomination signatures of any candidate in this year’s election.” With 397 signatures, Diserio nearly doubled the signatures of 10-year incumbent Spadafora, with the second-highest signature count.

Sample ballots for the Nov. 7th municipal election from

The most important part of Spadora’s campaign, he claims, is that he is “dedicated to fostering an inclusive and sustainable future for our community through responsible governance and proactive initiatives.” A large part of his campaign focuses on the diversity of Malden, and noted that he is “committed to ensuring equal opportunities for all residents, regardless of their background or socioeconomic status.”

Colón Hayes’s platform is based on making sure Malden becomes “a welcoming city for all.” To do this, she says the city needs to “make Malden more affordable to live, preserve our green spaces, make sure our schools are equitable, and that our educators represent our diverse population —all while preparing for the future.”

McDonald summarized their last year in office, saying “I've focused on climate action, racial justice and language access, investing in schools and city services, and creating livable, walkable neighborhoods.” With hopes to continue that in this upcoming term, he noted “I'm running for re-election because I want this to be an inclusive, imaginative, equitable, welcoming, and dynamic community - I hope you'll advocate, vote, and volunteer to make your voice heard!”

In order of Wards, the next with a contested seat is Ward 2. Paul Condon, the incumbent, faces challenger Sheila Rachels in this election.

Condon noted that the most important aspect of his role is the safety he provides to Maldonians: “The safety of every citizen within the city of Malden has always been my #1 priority as the Ward 2 councilor. And as always, the need to improve our infrastructure within Ward 2 will continue.”

For Rachels, her platform surrounds her desire to “bring neighbors together through community focused events and improvements.” She elaborated on this, expounding that she wants “to focus on enhancing walkability by fixing potholes, sidewalks, and adding more shade trees; addressing some of the transparency issues at City Hall by having regular touch points with neighbors; and breaking down some of the barriers to civic involvement by spinning up a neighborhood block club.”

2022-2023 City Council from

Ward 5 has no incumbent: City Council President Barbara Murphy is stepping down from her position, leaving the position to be filled by someone who has not held office. Ariane “Ari” Taylor and Julie Willcox-Turner have both put their names down to fill this role.

“I am running because I believe we need a Ward 5 City Councillor who will listen to and advocate for all our residents,” Taylor pushed, as part of her focus as Councillor would revolve around connecting with Malden residents. She furthered that the person to fill this role must be someone to “make Malden accessible, inclusive, and affordable; and who will be mindful of the future we leave for the next generation.”

Willcox-Turner noted, first and foremost, “My goal is to ensure all Maldonians feel safe, equal and heard.” Her belief is that the advancement of this will promote a healthier community: “When we have a feeling of community, people look out for each other.”

Finally, Ward 6 has two people running: incumbent of one year Stephen Winslow, and former Ward 6 School Committee member Jerry Leone. Due to them both holding office previously, even with different roles, there is less of a gap in advantages from previous experience.

Winslow’s mission for his next term, if re-elected, is to continue working on “making our streets safer, addressing climate change, and keeping housing affordable” within the community: “For years I have reached out to Malden students on these efforts from adding bicycle racks and making it safer to walk, bike, or take the bus to Malden High, working with Malden High and Malden Catholic students on climate change, and… on bus route improvements and housing initiatives.”

2022-2023 School Committee from

Wards 1, 3, 4, and 7 are all candidates running unopposed. Respectively, the councilors are Peg Crowe, Amanda Linehan, Ryan O’Malley, and Chris Simonelli.

All School Committee positions are unopposed this year. Incumbents Michael Drummey, Robert McCarthy, Jr., Vice Chair Jennifer Spadafora, Dawn Macklin, Joseph Gray, Keith Bernard, and Sharon Rose Zeiberg will resume their previous positions. Ward 5’s incumbent, Adam Weldai, is not seeking re-election, so candidate Elizabeth Hortie will take that role, as she has no opponents this season.

To vote in this election, every voter must be registered by October 28th. To register, pre-register (for minors 16+), update address, update party, update name, or check registration status, follow the steps on this website for all citizens of Massachusetts.

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