My name is Tommy John Schiavoni. I am a husband, father, teacher and member of the Southampton Town ZBA and the Sag Harbor Board of Education. I am running now for Southampton Town Board for the same reason that I sought every office thus far, to maintain what is best about our community and make changes for the better where we need it. The ocean, bays and ponds are our life-blood on the East End, and my attention will be on town wide concerns about water quality and affordable residential and small-business solutions. I’m, also, committed to focus on community health issues like tick-born illnesses and opioid addiction which tragically affect us all.
For three generations, my family has run a local plumbing and heating business in the community. I began working in this business at the age of twelve during summers and vacations, which gave me valuable skills in the home and commercial building trades. I grew up on construction sites with master tradesmen in all areas of building. This knowledge and experience is a part of me and fuels my desire to find pragmatic solutions to problems, mechanical and otherwise.
We all have our particular callings in life, and I learned that working in the trades was not mine as my passion for History grew; so, I pursued a career in Education. I attended SUNY Cortland and received my Bachelor of Arts in Secondary Social Studies . . . and became a teacher. Later, I earned my Masters Degree from SUNY Stony Brook. I am currently a High School Social Studies Teacher in the Center Moriches School District where I’ve been working since 1988 teaching Participation in Government, Economics and US History and Government. After more than 3 decades my teaching career finds me facing retirement next year, which gives me the final element I needed to run for town-wide office.
Presently on the Southampton Town Zoning Board of Appeals and on the North Haven ZBA before that, I work with others reviewing individual homeowner-applications under relevant law to make determinations about respective property rights; and on the North Haven Village Board I had the chance to make even broader decisions affecting every aspect of life in the village, everything from roads to beaches to tick-born illnesses. As a member of the Sag Harbor Board of Education, I’ve worked with a diverse group to settle contracts with all of the bargaining units of the district, managed new and planned construction and delivered a budget that is under the tax cap without cutting a single program. On the Board, I, also, serve as the legislative liaison to the BOE, whereby I attended the Legislative update meeting with BOCES and traveled to Albany to meet with legislators from both houses advocating for public education. All of this experience has prepared me well for the Town Board.
Born and raised in Sag Harbor, I know the benefits of a strong spirit of public service on the East End . . . in the Fire Departments, the parks, the libraries, the museums, the varied and historic houses of worship, Village Boards, local and state government, and more, all filled with people devoting time and effort to making things better. It is my desire to give back to a community which has given so much to me. For these reasons I am running for Southampton Town Board and would be honored to serve you.