The Massachusetts Selectmen’s Association hosts an annual Leadership Conference with sessions for newly-elected and veteran selectmen.

Saturday - June 8, 2019
8:00 am – 2:00 pm

Newly elected as well as veteran members of select boards are invited to a leadership conference being held by the Massachusetts Selectmen’s Association on Saturday, June 8, in Sharon.

The MSA Board of Directors will open the meeting with a panel presentation, “Life As A Selectman As We Know It.”

A “Municipal Finance 101” session will be led by Arlington Deputy Town Manager Sandy Pooler and Sharon Finance Committee Member Ira Miller, who is also president of the Association of Town Finance Committees.

Sen. Jason Lewis, chair of the Legislature’s Joint Committee on Education, will give an inspiring lunchtime presentation on leadership and education.

Tara Lynch from the Division of Local Services and Cohasset Town Manager Chris Senior will lead a session on best practices for sharing services across communities.

An introduction to the open meeting and public records laws will be led by attorney Lauren Goldberg, a partner with KP Law, and Paul DeRensis, a municipal counsel and a selectman in Sherborn.

Another session will discuss how to build consensus when you’re only one vote.

The training will break into two tracks for varying experience levels.

The meeting will include a networking breakfast and lunch. The cost is $35.


8 a.m.
Registration, Networking and Continental Breakfast
Main Ballroom

8:30 a.m.
Welcome and Introductions
Jim Lovejoy, Mount Washington Select Board Member and President, Massachusetts Selectmen’s Association
Main Ballroom

8:45 a.m.
MMA Legislative Update
Geoff Beckwith, MMA Executive Director
Main Ballroom

9:15 a.m.
Keynote Presentation: Selectman Life As We Know It
MSA Board of Directors

10:15 a.m.

10:30 a.m.
Breakout Session A: Municipal Finance 101
Municipal finance is one of the most important aspects of the job for selectmen in Massachusetts. Come prepared to learn budgeting basics, that free cash isn’t really free, and the importance of your town’s finance committee.
Sandy Pooler, Deputy Town Manager, Arlington
Moderator: Ira Miller, President, ATFC and Sharon Finance Committee Member
Main Ballroom

Breakout Session B:
You’re Only One Vote: Building Consensus on Your Board and Beyond
Building consensus is a key skill in municipal management. Do you know all of the players and how can you cross the aisle to get other perspectives and stakeholders to see your perspective? Learn how you can build consensus with fellow board members, your town manager, department heads, and the community in order to achieve your goals.
Barry Del Castilho, Select Board Member, Buckland
Josh Ostroff, Former Natick Selectman
Moderator: Michael Bettencourt, Selectman, Winchester
Junior Ballroom

11:45 a.m.

11:55 a.m.
Breakout Session C: Introduction to Open Meeting/Public Records Law
The Massachusetts Open Meeting and Public Records Laws are critical to understanding your role as a public servant. The Open Meeting Law pertains to how you can communicate with your fellow board members, town employees, and even community residents. The Public Records Law can affect your email accounts, social media, and any documentation you could be preparing for a board meeting, public hearing, etc. Having a working knowledge of both of these laws is critical as a select board member in Massachusetts.
Lauren Goldberg, Partner, KP Law
Moderator: Paul DeRensis, Selectman, Sherborn
Solarium Ballroom

Breakout Session D: Shared Services: Your Guide to Cooperation Across Town Lines
Regionalization and shared services are more than just a ‘best practice’. Take theory to practice with experts from the state and local levels on how to implement shared services in your town. In this session, communities will identify actual models of shared services that have enhanced their communities effectiveness and efficiency across different realms of municipal government.
Tara Lynch, Senior Project Manager, Division of Local Services/Technical Assistance Bureau
Christopher Senior, Town Manager, Cohasset
Moderator: Bill Keegan, Town Manager, Foxborough
Solarium Ballroom

1 p.m.
Lunch & Keynote Presentation: Education and Local Leadership
Senator Jason Lewis, 5th Middlesex District

2 p.m.

Sharon Community Center, Sharon

MMA Member Services Coordinator Devon Elizabeth Williams
Massachusetts Selectmen's Association