Sussex County Delaware
Republicans Seek
to Oust Sen. Adams
Sussex Beat, Sept. 6, 2002

NOTE: Sussex Beat is a log of news briefs and commentary by Kerin Magill, editor of Sussex County Online, with contributions from Sussex County Online users.


Kerin Magill, Sussex County Online

SC Online

19th Senate District ...

Two Republicans are vying to unseat longtime state Sen. Thurman Adams from his 19th District seat.

Facing off in the Saturday, Sept. 7, 2002, primary are Esthelda R. Parker Selby of Milton and Matthew A. Opaliski of Greenwood.

Both say they feel it's time for new blood to lead the 19th District.

Selby, 55, is a lifelong resident of Sussex County who has built a career in education in the Cape Henlopen School District. Selby said she has worked with every grade from kindergarten to 12th grade as both a teacher and an administrator and now supervises the district's student services and mentoring program.

She said her students have encouraged her over the years to run for state office and feels she would bring an ability to work with people of diverse backgrounds to the job. "This is kind of like the icing on the cake," she said.

"It's time for some new millenium thinking," Selby said. "I call myself an agent for change."

The daughter of Denver Parker, who led the move to segregate Sussex County schools and was a well-respected teacher in the area, Selby said education is obviously one of her great loves.

But she said she is also "very concerned about our senior population," particularly in the area of medical insurance. "I want to make sure they're getting what they need at an affordable rate," Selby said.

She added that although Sussex County's poor residents don't get a lot of attention, she wants to make sure they don't slip through the cracks of the state government.

Opaliski, at 28, is barely eligible to run for state office, although he has participated in quite a few statewide issues already. "Having done all I can do as a private citizen," particularly in the realm of Constitutional issues, Opaliski said, he feels he is now ready to tackle the issues as a state legislator.

For one, Opaliski supports the effort of Sussex County Sheriff Robert Reed to expand the powers of his department beyond serving papers and transporting criminals. Opaliski said he feels it would be in the best interest of Sussex County residents to have a sheriff's department with police powers. The idea, he said, "is not to do away with the state police, but to work with them."

Other issues Opaliski feels are crucial to preserving Sussex County's quality of life are land use, preservation of agriculture, transportation and education.

Opaliski said he wants a chance to run against Adams, who he said is "out of touch" with his constituency. "The tides are ready for a change," he said.

A native of Philadelphia, Opaliski has lived in Sussex County for 10 years. He works in industrial maintenance for a paper cup company in Federalsburg, Md. He and his wife have three children.

Lewes Community Design Workshop

The City of Lewes will host a free Community Design Workshop on Saturday, Sept. 28, 2002, at the Virden Retreat Center on the campus of the University of Delaware's College of Marine Studies.

The workshop, which begins at 10 a.m., is designed to provide a public venue for the Lewes Canalfront Park site program, organization, circulation and major design concepts.

This workshop follows up on a June workshop attended by more than 100 local residents and busiess owners.

"Our goal is to discuss and refine the park design concept and interpretation philosophy, and to propose actions and priorities for the site development and design principle for the park," said Nelson Wiles, project coordinator for the City of Lewes.

A team of designers from Andropogon Associates Ltd. from Philadelphia with an expertise in landscape architectural and ecological planning will lead the workshop activities.

Refreshments and a Contintental breakfast will be provided. Although not necessary, pre-registration is available by calling Nelson Wiles at Lewes City Hall at 302-645-7777 or by email at Pre-registrations should be submitted by Friday, Sept. 13.

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