Patterson one vote short of appointment
By Brendan Clogston
Millie Cardello is going “full circle,” in her own words, returning to the School Committee to fill the seat left vacant by the passing of her friend, Richard Baniewicz. Cardello, a former councillor, alderman, and School Committee member, was appointed at a joint meeting of the City Council and School Committee on Monday.
“I will do the best that I can do on the School Committee. I am so proud. I feel like my life just went full circle, and this means so much to me,” said Cardello. “We’re all from Everett. We all live here. We all love our city. And that’s why we do the things we do.”
Baniewicz passed away suddenly late last year after winning reelection in November. Only months before, another School Committee member, Robert Carreiro, passed away unexpectedly. Marcony Almeida Barros, a staffer from Attorney General Maura Healy’s office who ran a last minute write-in campaign for the seat, served the remainder of Carreiro’s term last year. On Monday night, Almeida Barros was unanimously appointed to a full term.
Cardello was nominated by School Committee Members Thomas Abruzzese and Frank Parker. Abruzzese called Cardello’s resume one that “stacks up against anyone in this room, and frankly, probably anyone in this city.” Not only the right person for the job, Abruzzese called her the right person to fill the emotional gap left by the late School Committee member.
“The School Committee has taken a tremendous hit over the past couple of months,” said Abruzzese. “We sort of lost our heart and soul with Richie and Bobbie. Quite frankly, to add Milly back onto the School Committee I think would be more than taking a step towards closing up a hole left in all our hearts.”
Parker added that with the loss of Carreiro, the committee lost his expertise on special education. Millie has “proven success” in the area.
While the assembly ultimately took a unanimous voice vote in support of her appointment, the decision was not a given: Her challenger for the appointment, Amanda Burley-Patterson (daughter of Clerk of Committees John Burley), had significant support, especially on the City Council. She fell shy of the appointment by just one vote, receiving nine votes to Cardello’s 10.
Patterson was nominated by Anthony DiPierro and Michael McLaughlin, both former classmates of hers, who spoke of the former EHS student as someone who could be a fresh face on the School Committee.
“The City of Everett needs more people like Amanda, who are willing to return to the city that they grew up in and want to get involved in the community and public service,” said McLaughlin.
“I’ve known Amanda for about a decade now, and she’s an educated, energetic and motivated individual,” said DiPierro. “I think her background speaks for itself, and she’s exactly what the city needs in my opinion. She’s young and passionate, and her fresh perspective as a member of the School Committee will be an asset to us all. More young blood is exactly what this city needs. Residents want change.”
In addition to DiPierro and McLaughlin, Patterson saw support from Councillors Fred Capone, John Hanlon, Michael Marchese, Wayne Matewsky and Peter Napolitano. On the School Committee, David Ela and Allen Panarese voted for Patterson.
Voting for Cardello were Councillors Richard Dell Isola, Rosa DiFlorio, John Leo McKinnon and Stephen Simonelli, and School Committee members Thomas Abruzzese, Marcony Almeida Barros, Beradino D’Onofrio, Joseph LaMonica, Lester MacLaughlin and Frank Parker.