Woodbridge Democrats assembled an extraordinary slate of highly qualified, experienced candidates this spring, ready to guide the town through a measured reopening from this year’s disruptive pandemic, and ready to lead the town’s resurgence thereafter.
Profiles of some candidates appeared in the most recent edition of this paper; those are now available at the WDTC website: woodbridgectdems.org. This week’s column features profiles of several more of your neighbors and friends, running for elected office to serve fellow residents and advance the best interests of the town.
Board of Selectmen candidate Paul Kuriakose has served on the Board of Finance since 2015 and has been its vice-chair since 2019. Paul brings expertise from a successful business career as a real estate investor and manager and decades as a technology strategist. He is a collaborative and forward-thinking leader on the Board of Finance and as liaison to the Board of Police Commissioners.
Paul has degrees in computer science, software engineering, and business from the New York Institute of Technology, Fairfield University, and NYU Stern School of Business, respectively. Paul’s extensive education, professional experience, and working knowledge of the town’s budget will be a great asset on the Board of Selectmen.
Carol Oladele, Ph.D., a chronic disease epidemiologist and health disparities researcher at Yale, seeks to represent Woodbridge on the Amity Board of Education. Her professional expertise will help inform districtwide conversations on public health issues; her affiliation with the American Public Health Association and the American Heart Association, coupled with a joint commitment – with her husband, Jean-David – to raising two school-aged sons, underscore Carol’s vibrant community spirit.
“I’m running to lend my voice to maintaining strong academic school communities that foster creativity, leadership, and inclusiveness,” Carol said.
Another healthcare professional, Maria Federico Madonick, APRN, CRNA, is running to serve on the Woodbridge Board of Education (WBOE). Maria, who will complete her Doctor of Nurse Anesthesia Practice degree this spring, works at Yale New Haven Health and is self-employed as well. She has been a member of the CT Association of Nurse Anesthetists since 2006; she is currently the Beecher Road School PTO Executive Board Treasurer, Special Events Coordinator and has served on its Teacher Grant Committee since 2015.
“I have a love for the Woodbridge community and a passion for channeling that energy into concrete ways to support education,” Maria said. “Woodbridge education must continually evolve so that our students meet and exceed the growing challenges of middle school and high school.”
Maria and her husband are raising four school-aged children.
Jay Dahya, Ph.D., is also actively involved at Beecher Road School, and now also seeks a seat on the WBOE. Jay has been on the school’s Diversity Committee since 2018; he and his wife have been active BRS/MAG parents for seven years.
Jay is a professor of finance at Baruch College, CUNY, Graduate Center CUNY, and at Columbia Business School, Columbia University, specializing in all areas of financial management and corporate governance.
“As a board member I will listen to diverse opinions, be fair and transparent in decision making, work collaboratively on committees, help to guide school leadership on future strategy, ensure financial accountability, and selflessly serve the community,” Jay said. “My finance background (provides) unique knowledge of financial planning and budgeting to help the school balance investment needs, that further enrich the quality learning experience for our children at BRS, against fiscal responsibility to all town residents.”
Incumbent WBOE member David Ross, M.D., Ph.D., seeks a second term on Election Day. He and his wife Shana have a 4th grade student at Beecher Road School; David is an Associate Professor of Psychiatry at the Yale School of Medicine, after receiving three degrees from Yale.
David’s community service includes membership on the New Haven Road Race board of directors, and he’s the executive director of the National Neuroscience Curriculum Initiative.
Profiles of the remaining members of the Democratic slate will appear in the next edition of this column. In the meanwhile, readers are encouraged to visit WoodbridgeCTdems.org to learn how to vote by absentee ballot – should they so choose – ahead of the MONDAY, May 3 election.
Residents who want to be involved in local government should contact the Woodbridge Democratic Town Committee at firstname.lastname@example.org.