Shelby candidate opposed to stone quarry agrees that ‘Experience matters’

Posted 6 August 2017 at 9:08 am

Editor:

“Experience matters.” It is a slogan I’ve seen around Shelby lately and I agree. Here’s why I believe my experience makes me an excellent choice for Town Supervisor, and how it has influenced my firm opposition to the proposed stone quarry.

My name is Wendi Pencille. My husband, Tim, and I moved to the Town of Shelby in 1993 to raise a family. Our two sons, Noah, 17, and Jaden, 14, are both great students and proud members of the Medina Mustang Marching Band.

I graduated from Cornell University School of Agriculture and Life Sciences in 1985 and soon afterward became assistant administrator of Bassett Manor in Williamsville. I later was promoted to administrator of that 107-bed assisted living facility for senior citizens, supervising its budget and its 40-plus employees.

I then pursued a master’s degree in microbiology at Buffalo State College, leaving to work at Bristol Myers Squibb as environmental microbiologist and later as assistant manager of quality control, chemistry and microbiology.

In 2000, I became a full-time mom to our boys, a life decision I do not regret. Our sons are Tim’s and my greatest achievements.

Three and a half years ago I went to work for Ingram Micro in Williamsville, the largest distributor of technology products in the world. As a senior channel account specialist for IBM, I provide operational support to multimillion-dollar accounts daily.

Even when I was not receiving a company paycheck, I have worked in many ways to try to make life in our town better:

• I have been a member of the Medina School Board for the past seven years, serving two of those as president. I am very proud that while I served, we have maintained or lowered the school tax rate while at the same time improved programs and academic performance across the district. I have been honored to work with some of the best school board members in New York.

• I’ve been a licensed wildlife rehabilitator for nearly 30 years, specializing in birds of prey. My husband, Tim, and I coordinated the construction of one of the largest raptor enclosures in New York State, with the help of many people in the community. Among the hundreds of birds of prey I have tended and released since then are nine bald eagles and eight peregrine falcons.

• I have served as president of the grass-roots committee Citizens for Shelby Preservation for over 10 years now, providing facts about Frontier Stone’s proposed 270-acre stone quarry adjacent to our Iroquois National Wildlife Refuge.

During that time, I have attended every meeting regarding the proposed quarry. I have attended all-day training sessions by the U.S. Geological Survey on groundwater and hydrology with the refuge staff. I have testified before the state administrative law judge regarding the wildlife at the proposed site. I have met for years with the residents who will be directly affected.

I am not opposed to stone quarries in general. However, after all of those years of research and listening to the people in our town, I am convinced, beyond a doubt, that a quarry should not be sited next to one of the most sensitive habitats in the state of NY. It has no business operating in a quiet agricultural and residential neighborhood.

I firmly believe that the Town Board should do everything in its power to protect the residents who want to maintain their peaceful country way of life.

I strongly support economic growth. Providing great schools, supporting creative and diverse local businesses and providing shovel-ready infrastructure are all great ways to reinvigorate a local economy and to bring people and jobs to the area. A stone quarry is not one of them.

When someone tells you that experience matters, believe them. My experience matters

Sincerely,

Wendi V. Pencille

Candidate for Shelby town supervisor