William “Bill” Aiello is a retired U.S. Air Force veteran and current town councilor. He was born in Westerly and attended Westerly and Chariho schools before entering active duty, serving stateside and overseas. His career advanced quickly and included the roles of trainer, evaluator, liaison, superintendent and director. He coordinated security with U.S. and host nation representatives and was the senior security agent on advance teams and deployments. He assisted in design and oversight of a multimillion-dollar construction project while managing site security and coordinating security efforts for a major consolidation and relocation. He developed and managed budgets and provided government contract oversight to million dollar security and law enforcement operations. He trained in leadership, communication, emergency management, process improvement and acquisition. He completed an Associate Degree of Applied Science in Security Administration. He worked with presidential support activities, mobile tactical intelligence units and an internationally recognized engineering and development center for air and space. While serving in Tennessee, he was twice elected president of a local military association and awarded the Tennessee Outstanding Achievement Award.
After returning to Westerly, Bill furthered his knowledge of local government through meetings of the municipality and school department, participating as a committee member or public citizen. He serves his church community as an Extraordinary Minister and lector and previously served his fire district as an elected auditor. He volunteered in the Westerly Public Schools for nine years, worked as a substitute teacher assistant and recess aide for five years and volunteered as a youth soccer and baseball coach of his grandson’s teams for several years.
Bill is an independent thinker who listens to others and has been working to serve all corners of town since being elected to the council in 2016. He strives to be a good steward for the town--balancing the needs and desires of all and making the best decisions possible for the betterment of the entire community.
A few council accomplishments this term have been to appropriately fund the police pension account, reorganize the finance department, adopt policies for sound fiscal management, support wastewater facility improvements, increase efforts to reduce blighted properties, continue road and sidewalk improvements and authorize a $15 Million Road Bond question for voters (if approved, resulting funds will be divided over three years to jumpstart repair of the town-wide roadway network).
Bill believes that Westerly is a wonderful place to live, play, work and visit and that we need to maintain facilities, improve infrastructure, protect natural resources, attract economic development and employment opportunities, encourage life-long learning and trade skill initiatives and enhance quality of life for families and individuals of all ages and capabilities with an emphasis on providing opportunities for our senior citizens to continue leading independent, healthy lifestyles.
Support the Westerly School system by working closely with the School Department.
Maintain or reduce tax rates by attracting new business to Westerly.
Promote tourism by exploring extended stay facilities and working closely with the economic development commission on the comprehensive plan.
Waive permits and other fees for certain categories of businesses that are building or expanding facilities in Westerly.
Explore town-wide public transportation system with a focus on the beach and business areas.
Investigate public and/or partially subsidized transportation for the elderly.
Make well-reasoned and prudent fiscal decisions to keep Westerly’s taxes reasonable and affordable to its citizenry.
Maintain & improve roads, sidewalks, and buildings (including both town and school facilities)
Increase bicycle paths to shoreline and downtown business areas.
Improve fuel economy of the Westerly vehicle fleet.
Provide building permit incentives for improvements that increase energy efficiency in homes and businesses.
Investigate renewable energy sources for use in our public facilities, including geothermal, solar, wind and water energy generation.
Upgrade existing facilities to improve energy.
She has an extensive background in the financial field, obtained series 7 and 66 certifications and gained experience in compliance, audit, and regulations. Giorno has worked for well-known companies such as Morgan Stanley Smith Barney, Merrill Lynch, and The Washington Trust Company. She has accepted several invitations to speak to various groups of financial professionals and enjoys empowering others to succeed.
Besides her education and experience, she is best known for her dedication to the community. Giorno was awarded the first annual Southeastern Connecticut 40 Under 40 award for community service excellence and business success. Most recently, she received the Westerly/Pawcatuck Community Service Award from WBLQ for her volunteer efforts. She has volunteered time teaching underprivileged parents resume and cover letter writing as well as interview skills and techniques. Generational growth and development is a big focus for Giorno, and she continually encourages others to do their part to help our community blossom. As the former President for the Stonington Lighthouse BNI, she helped business owners and professionals to succeed and empowered them to help others.
Currently, Suzanne owns and operates Giorno Investigation Agency, a private investigation company licensed and bonded in Rhode Island. She focuses on financial fraud, marital infidelity, insurance fraud, and missing persons investigations. Often times, Giorno volunteers her time and efforts to find missing children from Westerly and the surrounding areas.
She and her husband, Tony, have two wonderful children, Tony and Mariana. Both Suzanne and her husband coach children’s soccer, baseball and football teams. For the last few years, Giorno has devoted time teaching toddler-focused classes at the Tower Street Community Center and has volunteered time running the Fun in the Sun kids’ craft program at the Westerly Town Beach.
Chris Duhamel is a vice president of DiPrete Engineering and has been a professional engineer and land surveyor for 38 years. He and his wife, Aggie, of 36 years have four children and five grandchildren. Chris attends St. Pius X Church and is an adjunct professor at URI. He is a past member of the Westerly Planning Board for 13 years and currently volunteers as a member of the State of RI Professional Engineering Board of Registration. Also, he is a former volunteer for Westerly Pee Wee Football and Westerly National Little League, serving as President.
Previously, from 2002-2016, Chris served on the Town Council. Due to his expertise as an environmental engineer, he served on the building committees which constructed Westerly Middle School and renovated Westerly High School. In addition, he chaired the building committee for the Westerly Department of Public Works highway garage, salt sheds, and recycling area. He was a support for Stand Up for Animals in construction of the new Westerly Animal Shelter. After the devastating 2010 flood and Super Storm Sandy, he served on subcommittees to rebuild both the Westerly Town Beach pavilion and Westerly’s North End. He helped secure funding for purchase of the Bradford preserve open space. Chris served on the public works committee which provided for repair of the water department infrastructure with the construction of the 1 MG Winnapaug Water Tank, a 500 mgd Bradford public well, a 20-inch water main from White Rock wells, and the MIOX water purification system. During the recession, he worked to prioritize road and utility infrastructure improvements without increasing taxes.
Chris believes that Westerly is an incredible place to live and raise a family. He recognizes that the spirit of volunteerism in our community is unique. Chris knows it is important to protect our town and school children and support our future generations by providing responsible government.
Living in Westerly since then, Brian and Kathie raised one son, Michael, who was schooled in the Westerly system until he went to college. Michael now lives in Darien, CT, with his wife, Nicole Stevens and their 3-year-old twins, Everly Harper and Keegan Michael.
As a business major in college, Brian learned the basics of running a business. As co-owner of his own construction company since 1985 he has had dealt with all the ups and downs and financial challenges created in the ever-changing economic environment.
Always attentive to the bottom line, Brian knows the value of a dollar and believes in fiscal responsibility. Past budgetary decisions made while serving on the Town Council were greatly influenced by his credence in spending the town’s money as carefully and responsibly as he would his own.
That being said, he knows a community needs the best schools and teachers it can possibly afford. His own son is a testament of how great Westerly schools can be. Along with that, he is a supporter of the Westerly Arts and believes in civic duties and commitment to services. Brian has served as a Cub Scouts den leader; a member of The Westerly Lions Club; past Board Member of the Ocean Community Chamber of Commerce; The Wood-Pawcatuck Watershed Association; Athena Award Committee; Past President and member of the Friendly Sons of St. Patrick and both the Rhode Island and the National Builders Associations. As well as serving on the Westerly Town Council he has also served on the Citizens Advisory Committee for Revaluation; the Westerly Town Zoning Board; the Comprehensive Plan Advisory Committee and a member on the Westerly Police Building Committee. He is also a recipient of the Melvin Jones Fellow Award for exemplary work in the community.