Wilton selectmen make 'historic' appointments

Adrienne Reedy has been appointed to the Wilton Police Commission.

Adrienne Reedy has been appointed to the Wilton Police Commission.

Contributed photo

WILTON — Two new appointees are changing the face of Wilton’s public safety commissions.

The Board of Selectmen appointed Adrienne Reedy to the police commission, and Terrie Schwartz to the fire commission, at a meeting on Monday, Nov. 2.

“Adrienne Reedy and Terrie Schwartz make Wilton history,” First Selectwoman Lynne Vanderslice wrote on her Facebook page.

“This is the first time in anyone’s memory, and likely the first time ever, that there is a woman on both public safety commissions at the same time,” Vanderslice wrote. “In the case of Adrienne, it is the first person of color on the police commission.”

The police and fire commissions are three-member boards. Reedy, an unaffiliated voter, will join David Sauvigne, a Republican, and David Waters, a Democrat, on the police commission.

Terrie Schwartz, a Democrat, joins Republicans Casey Healy and Christopher Weldon on the fire commission.

“The Board of Selectmen recently set a high bar for the preferred qualifications for public safety commissioners. Both Adrienne and Terrie bring outstanding and unique backgrounds to the police and fire commissions,” Vanderslice said.

The appointments follow discussions the selectmen had in July, where the board adopted candidate preferences in order to diversify membership on the town’s public safety boards, which have been historically populated by older white males.

The Wilton police department generally gets few minority applicants for open police officer positions, Vanderslice said in July, and she hoped having a minority on the police commission would send a message to encourage people of color to apply.

Reedy, who is Black, said she welcomes her new role on the police commission. “During this time in 2020, with all the things coming up in the news with police and citizens and people of color, I felt it was my responsibility to be able to be on this commission. This is a historic moment. I can’t wait until this simply becomes the norm with our boards,” Reedy said, following the announcement of her appointment.

A Wilton resident for 23 years, Reedy is a recording gospel artist/worship leader and speaker and serves on the board of directors of KEYS, a nonprofit music education organization. She is married to Steve Reedy and has three sons.

In her application to serve on the police commission, Reedy wrote, “I’ve had the pleasure of getting to know some of our local police and I respect the current leadership. I’m pleased to say that our encounter with the Wilton police has been excellent, but that’s not to say that it’s the story I hear from everyone. What I think this simply means is that there’s room to expand one’s knowledge and awareness, which I know I can add value if given the opportunity to serve my community on this commission.”

Schwartz joins the fire commission after having served on the Wilton Security Task Force, an ad hoc committee which was dissolved last year after completing its mission to enhance safety and security measures for the schools and town.

“After serving on the task force, I wanted to further be engaged and helpful to the town,” Schwartz said.

Schwartz, who is retired, has lived in Wilton for 32 years with her husband Chris Giovino. She has an extensive background in law enforcement, having served as a special agent with the Federal Bureau of Investigation for 25 years, and for seven years with the New York office of Homeland Security.

“I think I’ll be a good fit on the fire commision,” she said.