Oakmont Council incumbents Tim Favo, Nancy Ride and John Donovan, as well as newcomers Elena Colianni and Donna Tessaro are seeking a spot on council. There are three four-year terms up for grabs.
Here's a look at each candidate:
Tim Favo, Republican
Favo, current council president, said his experience on council makes him a good choice to continue the work he’s been involved in in his eight years serving the community.
“We’ve been making strides,” he said, “and I’d like to continue working on the things we’re working on.”
One issue Favo wants to keep in the forefront is the repair and preservation of Oakmont’s brick roads.
“These roads are special to our community,” Favo said. “I want to continue to make repairs and help figure out what will work best to keep them around.”
Favo, who works in real estate insurance, said in addition to his years of experience, his wide breadth of knowledge on topics council addresses, his financial and business knowledge, and his presence and interest in the community are reasons his fellow Oakmont residents should vote for him.
John Donovan, Republican
Donovan is running for re-election this year. He’s served on council for two years and was the borough real estate tax collector for four years.
He is a certified personal accountant and lawyer and owns John P. Donovan & Associates in Oakmont.
Donovan was not available for comment.
Nancy Ride, Democrat
Ride also has experience to boast as she is currently serving her fourth year and second as vice president on council.
“Working on council has been interesting and challenging’” she said. “I try to learn about and then vote for the action I think will be best for the community.”
Ride said her immediate priority is the repair of Allegheny River Boulevard.
“The renovations done the past 15 years to the down town section as part of the Oakmont Boulevard Project have created a safer and more beautiful down town area,” she said. “The last piece is to repair the brick roadway of the boulevard. We have funds in our budget to begin the repairs which I would like to see used for this purpose.”
She’s also interested in continuing to be a part of the renovations of Riverside Park.
“The park is a great asset and these changes will enhance its value to the community and the school district,” Ride said.
Other areas she’d like to continue to be a part of are supporting the Oakmont police force and maintaining the roads, the sewer plant and other infrastructure in Oakmont.
Ride is a paralegal specializing in estate and trust administration and taxation. Throughout her career she has worked with the legal community, learned about interpreting legal documents, taxes, investments and personnel matters. She has been active in community organizations and an Oakmont resident most of her life.
“I think Oakmont is a wonderful place to live and when I was approached about running for council it seemed like a good opportunity to give back to the community,” she said.
Elena Colianni, Republican
With years of legal experience, securities licenses and a familiarity with financial matters, Colianni said she wants to help council with budgeting if elected.
“I offer a logical, common sense approach to problem-solving and decision-making as well as a love of the community, “ she said. “I’m hoping to contribute my common sense and legal and financial skills for the continued growth and betterment of the very special town of Oakmont.”
The 47-year-old attorney and resident of Oakmont has never held an elected position, but she has an interest in politics and is currently a member of the Property Maintenance Appeals Board in Oakmont and the Garden Club of Oakmont and a Lector at St. Irenaeus Church.
Colianni also has safety, security and drug awareness and prevention on her list of issues she’d like to tackle while on council and plans to work with the community, police and schools on these issues.
“I would like to give back to the community where I have lived for 15 years,” she said. “I will make a positive contribution to council.”
Donna Tessaro, Democrat
Donna Tessaro returned to Oakmont, her hometown, in June 2010 and wants to give back to the community she loves by serving on Oakmont Council.
“This town has been really good to me,” she said. “Becoming a member of council is one way I thought I could be involved and give back.”
Tessaro, 66 and, as she said, “still rolling,” is mostly retired after her last position as a housing and commercial property attorney for the Pennsylvania Human Relations Committee in Harrisburg. It is her interest in an accessible community for the handicapped that she focused on in that role that she said would carry into her time on council.
“Oakmont has done a really good job making the community accessible,” she said. “A few businesses need to get caught up on requirements for handicapped parking and accessible walkways, but all in all it looks good.”
For the community, though, Tessaro said she would like to be involved in projects coming up, like developments on the river front, and make sure everyone in the community could enjoy them.
Tessaro said her respectful nature, good listening abilities and her quality to always be curious would make her an excellent member of council. She’s also not afraid to speak up.
“I would be a fair and involved representative,” she said. “I would interject when I had something to say and work to get along and reach a goal.”