HAMPTON — Shirley Doheny was elected town clerk in Tuesday's election, taking over the office where she has worked for more than a decade.
Doheny, who has served as town clerk since her predecessor Jane Cypher left last fall, won a three-year term with 1,692 votes, defeating challengers Patricia Laflamme, who had 170 votes, and Michelle O’Brien-Hansen, who had 590 votes. The position pays a salary of $61,971.96. The race was one of three contested races on the ballot, the others being for Planning Board and cemetery trustee.
Doheny served for several years underneath Cypher, who resigned to move out of state. She said Thursday it was nice to have the election over so she could finally focus solely on running the office.
"I can move forward and do the things that need to get done in the office," said Doheny. "It feels great."
Cypher has said she hoped Doheny would win and that her former deputy's experience in the office made her the best candidate. She said Wednesday she was "ecstatic" for Doheny's win.
"The employees respect and look up to her, and the residents have faith and trust in her abilities," said Cypher. "She'll keep the integrity of the town clerk's office at the highest level possible."
Doheny's victory was celebrated by her staff with flowers, gifts and breakfast food to go with their morning coffee. She said residents have also come in and given her flowers and congratulations.
"It feels very good, the support that I've received from residents," said Doheny. "I'm very grateful."
Keith Lessard and Fran McMahon were elected again to the Planning Board, defeating Chris McPherron, Anne “Tocky” Bialobrzeski and Alena Degon. Lessard took 1,354 votes, McMahon 934, McPherron 509, Bialobrzeski 790 and Degon 474. Susan Irwin defeated Ute Pineo for a cemetery trustee seat by a vote of 1,341 to 690.
In uncontested races, Selectman Regina Barnes ran unopposed and was reelected for her second term with 2,130 votes. Steve Henderson and Joyce Skaperdas were elected to the Budget Committee, Bryan Provencal was reelected to the Zoning Board of Adjustments and Chris Hendry was reelected library trustee. With no one running for a Trustee of the Trust Funds seat, Warren Mackensen took 52 write-in votes to win the opening.