Henrietta Democrats announce 2015 candidates at rally

At a rally with more than 50 supporters, the Henrietta Democratic Committee announced our 2015 candidates at Henrietta Town Hall today. For the first time since 2009, we will field a full slate of candidates for Town Board and Supervisor.

The 2015 candidates include:

  • Michael Yudelson for Henrietta Town Supervisor
  • Robert Barley, Jr. for Henrietta Town Board
  • Michael Stafford for Henrietta Town Board
  • Simeon Banister for Monroe County Legislature, District 13
  • Maggie Ridge for Monroe County Legislature, District 12
  • Monroe County Legislator Justin Wilcox, District 14

With competitive local races, the Democrats expect a higher than normal voter turnout, which will affect races at the county level, including Sandra Frankel for Monroe County Executive and Maritza Buitrago for Family Court Judge

“We have a ticket that fully represents Henrietta in every way,” said Banister, Henrietta Democratic Committee Town Leader. “We’re representing Henrietta in our diversity, values and priorities.”

“Jack Moore wants to have it both ways – he’s criticized the surplus that accumulated over the previous decade due to the sales tax that Henrietta receives, yet he increased fees for recreation programs and homeowners have had their assessments increase so they pay more taxes,” said Yudelson. “Jack Moore sent residents a small tax rebate but has nickel-and-dimed us to get that money back.”

Over the past two years Supervisor Moore has given taxpayer money to a shocking number of political officers and campaign friends. Monroe County Legislator John Howland (R-District 13) was paid with taxpayer money to do building inspections. Others include the Chairman of the Henrietta Republican Committee at the time, who Jack appointed Deputy Supervisor and gave a massive raise, and the Town Leader of the Henrietta Conservative Party, who Supervisor Moore hired at a rate of $60 per hour to review town finances, despite already having an auditor for the Town.

Democrats maintain an advantage over Republicans in voter enrollment in the Town of Henrietta, 7,915 vs. 6,971 as of May 1, 2015 (per Monroe County Board of Elections). 

After coming under new leadership last year, the reinvigorated Henrietta Democratic Committee has grown in size and generated a buzz among residents who haven’t seen an active Democratic presence in decades. 

Now in the wake of the controversy surrounding Supervisor Jack Moore’s racist remarks, and the Town Board’s refusal to even condemn the remarks, Henrietta is poised to become a battleground and the Republicans are no longer the frontrunners.

About the candidates

Michael Yudelson has served six years as Henrietta Town Supervisor in addition to six years on the Town Board. Before entering politics, Yudelson was the director of the Department of Recreation and Youth Bureau for 18 years. He also served as Director of Operations at the Center for Youth Services and Executive Director at Threshold, Inc., foundations that provide services to at-risk youth. Yudelson is now running for Supervisor as a Democrat. 

Robert Barley, Jr. has been in investment planning for more than 28 years and owns his own investment practice, MDR Investment Management. Barley plays an integral role in the Rush-Henrietta Basketball and Football programs, including serving as their announcer. He is currently a member of the Zoning Board of Appeals for the Town of Henrietta and is now running for Town Board.

Michael Stafford is President of the Graphic Communications Conference of the Teamsters Local 503M, representing workers in the printing industry in Western and Central New York. He is also a Trustee on the Inter Local Pension Fund, a defined pension plan for retirees with more than $1 billion in assets. Stafford is running for Henrietta Town Board. 

Simeon Banister is a commercial real estate appraiser at Midland Appraisal Associates LLC and the owner of Legacy Advisory Services, LLC. He is the Town Leader of the Henrietta Democratic Committee and also serves as the President of the Greater Rochester Martin Luther King Jr. Commission. Banister is running for County Legislator in District 13, which includes parts of the Towns of Henrietta and Pittsford.

Maggie Ridge is a licensed Financial Consultant with ESL Investment Services LLC and is a founding member of the local chapter of the National Association of Investor’s Corp. She is running for County Legislator in District 12, an open seat this year due to term limits, which includes the Towns of Riga, Wheatland, and portions of the Towns of Chili and Henrietta.

Monroe County Legislator Justin Wilcox (D-District 14) was first elected in 2011 and represents the Town of Brighton and northern portions of the Town of Henrietta. He currently serves as the Ranking Minority Member on the Environment and Public Works Committee and is also a member of the Intergovernmental Relations Committee.