NYSCTA Founder Margaret Lamoree

Margaret Lamoree

How the Association was Formed

The Broome County Association of Municipal Clerks invited town Cclerks from all over the State of New York to a meeting held on January 21, 1982 in the Town of Kirkwood, Broome County, at the Quality Inn, with their President, Margaret Lamoree presiding. Town clerks from 12 counties and 125 towns attended. It was at this meeting that Margaret Lamoree, our founder, told the town clerks about the beginnings of a state wide association. 

Margaret did her homework and was preparing for this meeting for some time. Letters were read by Margaret from Attorney Herbert Kline, who was associated with the Association of Towns of New York, stating some of the steps necessary to form a state wide association. She invited Richard Place, Town Attorney for the Towns of Barker and Union, who addressed the town clerks and gave a detailed outline of the steps needed to be taken to form a state wide association, noting this would need to be set up as a Type B Corporation. He touched on 13 requirements including Certificate of Incorporation, By-Laws, Tax Exempt Relief, "The Purpose", Membership, Dues, Officers, Roberts Rules, Vacancy of Office, Conduct of day to day business, Provisions for Resignations and Reinstatements and Honorary members, Amendments, and a Provision for Dissolution of the Association. (Richard Place was later appointed as the Attorney for the Association)

Following some discussion by those in attendance, a motion was put forth by Charles English, Town of Windsor, seconded by Susan Querns, Town of Owasco, and adopted by an overwhelming majority to form a state wide Town Clerks Association.

On the 21st day of January, 1982, the 'New York State Town Clerks Association' was born. The dues for the first year were set at $20.

A motion was put forth by John Davanzo, Town of North Hempstead, seconded by Ruth DeSilva, Town of Dickinson,  and adopted, to appoint Carolyn Fitzgerald, Town of Kirkwood, as temporary Secretary-Treasurer. Carolyn immediately assumed her duties. 

A motion was put forth by Connie Lightner, Town of Vestal, seconded by Mildred Stewart, Town of Warwick, to nominate Margaret Lamoree, Town of Sanford, President of the New York State Town Clerks Association, and being no other nominations from the floor, Margaret Lamoree was elected President by all of those present.

Further nominations and elections were accomplished that day including Maureen Bowes, Town of Hamptonburgh, elected Vice President, Jane Collins, Town of Elma, elected Treasurer and Carolyn Fitzgerald was elected Secretary.

It was decided a meeting would be held in New York City in conjunction with the Association of Towns Conference in February 1982. 

Margaret scheduled several meetings during the year of 1982 as she forged ahead in an effort to meet all of the many legal and administrative requirements necessary for the New York State Town Clerks Association to become a successful and viable association. Meetings were held in Binghamton, the Town of Elma, Buffalo, and as far away as Shelter Island which is at the most easterly end of Long Island. 

Association Appointments

The state was divided up into eight (8) Districts with two District Directors to be appointed to represent that portion of the State. Margaret contacted town clerks from all over the State and made appointments to fill each District Director position, as well as made committee appointments.    

Other appointments were made in October of 1982 at Shelter Island. They were Joy Gorman, Town of Ramapo, 2nd Vice President, John Davanzo, 3rd Vice President, and Connie Lightner, Town of Vestal, Assistant Treasurer. By the end of 1982 there were 301 paid members of the Association.

The "Town Recorder" was sent out to all 932 town clerks in both February and March of 1983. The Spring 1983 edition contained the program and registration form for our first Annual Conference.

Annual Conference

Our first Annual Conference was held April 24th and 25th, 1983 in the Syracuse Hilton Inn, Syracuse, NY. There were approximately 150 town clerks in attendance and as of April 22, 1983 our paid membership was up to 459. The Associations first budget consisted of Estimated Receipts - $9,500.00 and Estimated Expenditures and Disbursements - $9,500.00.

The slate of officers presented to the membership by the Nominating Committee at the conference was the same as previously noted for the President and three (3) Vice Presidents. A few changes included Jane Collins, Town of Elma, was elected Secretary, Herbert Kline, Town of Boston, Assistant Secretary, Jim Hackett, Town of Union, Treasurer, and Connie Lightner, Assistant Treasurer. All were accepted as presented.

President, Margaret Lamoree, had appointed Barbara E. Decker, Town of Blooming Grove, to the Resolutions Committee. The first resolution she presented to the membership at our first conference was "To Increase All Town Clerks to a Four Year Term". There were seven (7) resolutions put forward and adopted that first year. 

Margaret Lamoree served as President of the New York State Town Clerks Association until 1987. The newly elected President of the Association, John Davanzo,  said of Margaret " without the foresight and imagination of Margaret Lamoree, there would be no New York State Town Clerks Association - no force to be reckoned with - no group power to help influence legislation and interface ideas and experiences in an effort to benefit constituents. I can remember that when things seemed to impossible, Margaret made them possible, the insurmountable became surmountable and as time went by we came to know that Margaret had the Power". 

Margaret Lamoree Retirement

After serving as Sanford Town Clerk for 11 years, Margaret retired as Town Clerk and Tax Collector on December 31,1987. Margaret was very aptly bestowed with the honor of being named the NYSTCA's first Honorary Member in April of 1988. Unfortunately she developed very serious health problems and Margaret passed away on November 18, 1998. As a lasting tribute to our founder and leader, an annual scholarship has been established in her name. She continues to have the power to make it possible for a town clerk to attend our Annual Conference and take advantage of professional development and continued education for town clerks by town clerks.

The very strong, basic foundation that was laid by Margaret Lamoree gave us the tools and insight to continue to thrive and grow each year. A membership report from Jim Hackett, Treasurer, in The Recorder indicated our membership in 1988 was up to 680 town clerks. 

Stepping into the presidency in 1987 was John Davanzo, North Hempstead Town Clerk, who was active in the Association since its inception and was also very dedicated to the continued success of NYSTCA. John was our ambassador of good will and traveled throughout the State of New York getting out the word about our great Association..

Meeting at Shelter Island October 18, 1982

Meeting at Shelter Island October 18, 1982

Left to right Standing - Millie Stewart - Warwick - Patricia Moore-Mamakating - Christine Gillette - Barker - Connie Lightner - Vestal - Dorothy Oger - Shelter Island - Helen Smith -Shelter Island - Ann Ocker - Oyster Bay - Barbara Decker - Blooming Grove - Marie Fuesy - Ossining - Seated - John Davanzo - Maureen Bowes- Hamptonburgh - Margaret Lamoree - Sanford and Joy Gorman - Ramapo.