A message from Dick:

A photo of me at 8. I am dressed as Uncle Sam, standing next ot an American Flag and wearing a star-spangled top-hat against a floral wallpaper background.
I seem to have first displayed my political stripes at the Pine Plains Grange Hall in 1957.

Dear Neighbor and Friend,

On November 7th, I will be on the ballot as a candidate for a seat in the Dutchess County Legislature to represent the Towns of Stanford, Pine Plains, Milan and North East. I will have the Democratic and Working Families lines on the ballot.

I appreciate your taking a few moments to read about why I am running for office and what I hope to accomplish. I would not be running unless I thought I was well quailified for the office of County Legislator. Except for years away for education, I have lived and worked my whole life in the communities I wish to serve. I grew up on Academy Hill Road in Milan, a town my paternal ancestors came to in the 1760’s. I have lived in Pine Plains for over forty years. My maternal grandparents lived in Millerton and I’ve been connected to that village since early childhood.

After college (I received a B.A. in Journalism from the University of Arizona in 1972), I returned east and co-founded Oblong Books & Music in Millerton. Independent businesses are the soul of small towns and I am gratified that the years of work at Oblong have resulted in it becoming one of the leading independent bookstores in the U.S. My daughter, Suzanna, is taking the reins of the business and this has allowed me the time to pursue elected public service. I have been married to Suzanna’s mom, Priscilla Herdman for 35 years.

Serving the communities I am part of has always been important to me. I co-founded the Harlem Valley Rail Trail Association and have led local support for the trail for over thirty years. I served on the Pine Plains School Board for three terms, including three years as Board President. I was a co-founder and am currently leader of the Millerton Merchants Assn. and I serve on the board of the Friends of the Irondale Schoolhouse. Also, as a hobby, I have weekly folk music radio programs on two local stations, WKZE and Robin Hood Radio.

Over the years I have learned how to run a business, lead meetings and help people find solutions to problems. I believe my education, experience, values and temperament have prepared me well for serving in the Dutchess County Legislature.

Folks who know me know this to be true: if elected, I will approach my responsibility to the citizens of our legislative district with sincerity, intelligence and tireless work.

We are living in unprecedented times. I believe we can find a way to agree on many issues to move our Towns and County forward. I will challenge Dutchess County to be a place where democracy can work without rancor. We can become a place where America gets back on track. I am ready to work for you and I have a challenge for you, as well: Don’t despair. Stay informed. Stay positive. Get involved. You can make a difference.

Thanks for visiting this web site. In the days ahead I’ll be posting positions on a wide variety of issues affecting you and our communities.

Dick Hermans