Michelle Capone announces run for Watertown City Council seat

Craig Fox, Watertown Daily Times, N.Y.
·3 min read

Mar. 10—WATERTOWN — Another candidate has come forward to run for the four-year seat on City Council.

Michelle L. Capone, who's actively involved in several organizations, confirmed Wednesday she's running for council. She picked up her petitions Wednesday afternoon from the Jefferson County Board of Elections.

Ms. Capone is the director of regional development for the Development Authority of New York and has worked at DANC for 21 years, and also serves as a volunteer on numerous boards of other organizations. She's focused her efforts on economic development in the north country, she said.

"I am passionate about our community and bring to the table a great deal of knowledge and experience that I believe would help the city reach its full potential," she said in a news release Wednesday. "In the weeks to come, I look forward to sharing my vision for the future with residents and of course, listening to their thoughts on how together, we can change our city for the better."

Councilwoman Lisa A. Ruggiero has announced she's seeking a second four-year term on council, while Councilman Ryan Henry-Wilkinson has decided not run again.

Former council candidates Robert T. Schorr and Aaron Clemons also have announced they are running for four-year terms. On his Facebook page, former mayoral candidate Cliff T. Olney III made it official that he's running and is seeking signatures on his petition.

Former radio personality Glenn Curry is also circulating petitions to run, although he has not publicly announced his plans.

As an active volunteer, Ms. Capone also serves as a member of the city's Planning Board, on the boards of the Watertown Center for Business and Industry, president of the local chapter of the Northern New York-Fort Drum Chapter of the Association of the United States Army and is on the Jefferson Community College Foundation.

"Whether through my professional career or my volunteer efforts, my life has been dedicated to helping the North Country — including the City of Watertown — succeed," Ms. Capone said. "I am confident my experience working with small businesses, non-profits and government would be beneficial to the Council and allow me to make a difference in the lives of residents in the City of Watertown."

Ms. Capone is a graduate of Jefferson Community College, SUNY Geneseo, where she earned a bachelor's degree in economics, and SUNY Oswego, where she earned a master's degree in business administration.

Prior to DANC, she worked at Watertown Savings Bank and the Small Business Development Center at Jefferson Community College. A resident of the city for more than two decades, Ms. Capone has been a homeowner for 14 years.

Mr. Clemons, who ran an unsuccessful campaign for council two years ago, also has thrown his hat in the ring. He made the announcement at the Italian American Civic Association last week.

Mr. Clemons, a self-employed finer services assistant for two area funeral homes, said he supports the city fire department and would work hard to keep city summer pools open.

"I will run a positive campaign, one in which I will display integrity and honesty in all of my interactions and treat all that I encounter with the utmost respect," he said.

He's a member of the Holy Family Church, Italian American Civic Association, the Jefferson County fair board, the Elks Club and the St. Anthony Men's Mount Carmel Society.

The seat vacated by former Councilman Jesse C.P. Roshia, who resigned in January, remains unfilled. Former council candidate Patrick Hickey, Jason Traynor, Amy Horton and Donnie Lee Barrigar have announced their candidacies for the vacant council seat to serve the remaining two years of the term.