By Curt Peterson
Maple Heights resident Jim Rielly was chosen from among four applicants to fill Hartland Select Board member Curtis Atkisson’s recently vacated seat on the five-person Hartland Select Board. The board interviewed four candidates before making their decision.
The other applicants were David Singer, Mandi Potter and Jacob Holmes.
Rielly, a member of the Hartland Planning Commission since July, will serve as interim selectperson until the next election in March. He is one of at least five candidates busy gathering signatures to run for the balance of Atkisson’s term, expiring in March 2023. Petitions have to be submitted by Jan. 24.
He said he hopes his appointed short term will be a “warm-up lap” for serving as an electee.
The Riellys moved to Hartland in May of 2019. Previously, Rielly managed a team of IT people at IDS (later renamed IDX) Healthcare in Burlington, acting as liaison between their Boston and Burlington offices. IDX was sold to GE in 2005, Rielly said.
He is currently senior healthcare IT professional for Providence Health & Services, of Renton, Washington, which operates 52 hospitals and 1,085 clinics, and employs 120,000 people in Alaska, California, Montana, New Mexico, Oregon, Texas and Washington, according to the website.
Reilly joined the Woodstock Rifle & Pistol Association and won a trap competition three years in a row. Reilly plans to retire here in about eight years.
“This is our final destination,” he said.
Select Board member Martha McGlinn, Rielly’s neighbor, told the Mountain Times, “I think Jim will be a good addition to the Select Board.”
Fellow Select Board member Phil Hobbie said, “Jim’s very simple presentation to the Board and his background appealed to me when making the decision. He’s pragmatic and aspires to achieve things in Hartland that are feasible.”
Rielly’s wife, Michelle, is Hartland’s assistant treasurer – keeping accounts and receiving tax payments in the town offices.
Hobbie said he didn’t expect having a husband and wife both involved in the finances of the town to create any “conflicts of interest,” but it was a consideration as the board deliberated whom to appoint.
In a telephone interview, Rielly said he has had both private and public management experience that he hopes he can invest in Hartland’s future as a selectperson, making sure residents get value for their tax dollars.
“As a family, Michelle and I have to stick to a budget and spend carefully. I think we have to make sure the town does the same,” he said. “And I’m always willing to learn something new.
“I hope to form working partnerships with the other select board members and with the residents,” Reilly added. “I’ve attended some board meetings, so I have an idea how things work, how they are done. It is surprising to me how few people attend the meetings.”