Francis to Resign as First Selectman


Durham First Selectwoman Laura Francis announced her resignation effective on July 18, ending 15 years in the role. 

In a statement to town residents, she wrote that, “It has been the supreme honor of my life to serve Durham citizens first as your Assistant Town Clerk, as your Town Clerk and now as your First Selectman. I am proud of the offices I have held, the work I have performed and the achievements I have accomplished.”

She will be resigning to become the Deputy Director/Director of Transportation Planning at the South Central Region Council of Governments. “Towns across Connecticut,” Francis said, “are becoming dependent on the partnership with Councils of Governments for many essential services, including management of state and federal funding that has recently been made available to municipalities.” 

Chapter 146 9-222 of the Connecticut General Statutes state that a vacant role of a first selectman will be filled by a member of the same party. Currently, one member of the Board of Selectmen, John Szewczyk, is a Republican, however George Eames was a Republican before being elected as an unaffiliated member. Szewczyk, who has served on the board since 2007, came under fire in 2020 for voting yes to confirm a land purchase from the town for himself. Eames has served on the board since 2019 when he was elected as the third highest vote receiver in the race for selectman.