Brian Bond... appointed in August 2011Sun staff photos can be ordered by visiting our Smugmug site.
Brian Bond ... appointed in August 2011

Sun staff photos can be ordered by visiting our Smugmug site.

DRACUT -- Hoping to secure his seat on the Dracut Housing Authority Board of Commissioners for another five years by getting voted in, rather than continuing to serve at the will of the governor as an appointee, Brian Bond will run in the May election.

Bond, a former Planning Board and Community Preservation Committee member, was appointed to the Housing Authority Commission by Gov. Deval Patrick in August 2011. In declaring his candidacy for a five-year term on the commission, Bond said he's aiming to win election to the seat now occupied by Commissioner Ken Cunha, who is not seeking re-election in May.

"Governor Deval Patrick's term expires in January of 2015 and he's not seeking re-election. Not knowing who the next governor will be, I have concerns of not obtaining the re-appointment," Bond said. "This has been on my mind for some time now."

Bond said he wants to pin down a five-year position to be certain that he can shepherd to completion some important ongoing projects that are sure to have major impact on tenants of the Dracut Housing Authority, but may take two or more years to complete. These projects include Bond's idea to convert the DHA's heating systems from electric to gas, and the effort by the Community Preservation Committee and other town leaders to develop 17 acres of the Richardson property on Bridge Street newly acquired by Town Meeting into 60 units of much-needed affordable senior housing in Dracut.

Bond's decision to seek election to a five-year term was made after Cunha informed Bond that due to business commitments, he will not seek re-election.

Bond praised Cunha for his service on the commission and indicated that if Cunha had decided to seek re-election, he would not have opposed him. "I serve with some of the best community leaders the town has to offer, and I would not consider running against them," Bond said.

Though the commissioners meet just once a month, Bond indicated he is committed to doing whatever homework or subcommittee work may be required to make informed decisions on housing issues facing the community, including a growing waiting list for affordable and senior housing in Dracut that recently surpassed 300 applicants.

Serving along with Cunha and Bond, the five-member Housing Authority Board of Commissioners includes Russell Taylor, chairman, whose term expires in 2016; Debbie Dewitt Ahearn, vice chairwoman, who is scheduled to serve through May 2017; and George Nangle, who was elected earlier this year to serve through 2018.

One member of the board is appointed by the governor and also serves a five-year term. Bond's term is scheduled to expire in January 2015, coinciding with Patrick's departure from office. Prior to declaring his candidacy for election, Bond consulted with Town Clerk Kathy Graham to confirm it would be legal for the governor's appointee to seek election to an open seat on the board. Graham assured him it is, Bond said.

Bond's four years of service as a Housing Authority commissioner got off to a controversial start in August 2011, when he voted at his first official DHA meeting as the governor-appointed commissioner, along with commissioners Ken Martin and Cunha, not to renew DHA Executive Director Mary Karabatsos' contract. Bond and the other commissioners later reversed that decision when faced with protests by senior housing residents, voting 5-0 to rehire Karabatsos over two other finalists with whom she was forced to compete for the job.

Since that bit of turbulence in 2009, Karabatsos and Bond and the other four commissioners have continued to work well together, Karabatsos said.

Born and raised in Dracut, Bond and his wife of 24 years, Mary, are the parents of two children. A master electrician, Bond has owned his own business, Bond Electric, since 1989.

Bond has served on numerous volunteer boards, commissions and youth sports organizations. He co-hosts "The Dracut Connection," a political talk show on DATV. An avid hiker, Bond has also produced a local-access TV show, "Mountain Man Adventures," posting some of the episodes on YouTube.

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