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Our Town by William Kelly: Bridget Moran joins Town Council; Bobbie Lindsay named Council President

Tuesday was a day of transition for the Town Council, when members bid a heartfelt farewell to retiring Council President Margaret Zeidman while welcoming new council member Bridget Moran.

The council unanimously voted to name Bobbie Lindsay, an eight-year veteran of the panel, as its new president for the coming year.

Lew Crampton, a council member since 2018, was chosen to succeed Lindsay as president pro tempore in a 3-2 decision. Lindsay, Moran, and Crampton voted for Crampton, while Julie Araskog and Ted Cooney voted for Cooney.

Judge Lisa Small swore Moran, Lindsay, and Crampton to two-year terms.

Moran narrowly defeated John David Corey in the March 19 municipal election following their contest for the Group 3 council seat vacated by Zeidman.

Moran served the last three years on the Landmarks Preservation Commission before resigning to take her council seat. Corey served for seven years on the Architectural Commission until this year.

Moran and Corey are both Midtown residents and Palm Beach Civic Association directors.

Neither Lindsay nor Crampton faced opposition in the March election.

Zeidman is a retired health care executive who joined the council in 2016 when she was elected without opposition to the seat previously held by Penny Townsend. Zeidman ran unopposed in 2018, 2020 and 2022.

She was chosen by her peers as council president for the last four years.

Zeidman said last year that she would step down at the end of her term to spend more time with her family.

Mayor Danielle Moore said the council was fortunate to have Zeidman’s leadership through the Zika virus outbreak and the Covid-19 pandemic.

Zeidman presided over major accomplishments including reconstruction of the Town Marina, progress in the townwide burial of overhead utility lines, reduction of the unfunded pension liability, and adjustments to employee pay and benefits to make the town more competitive in the local market.

“You have managed everything this town has done with such grace and ease,” Moore told Zeidman.

Lindsay said Zeidman always promoted an atmosphere of respect and civility in the council chambers.

She called Zeidman “a fearless seeker of the best path forward for our town.”

Other council members cited Zeidman’s intelligence, integrity, and sense of fairness as she labored to resolve conflicts to the best of her ability.

Zeidman received a standing ovation from council members, the staff and audience, and a bouquet of flowers from Town Manager Kirk Blouin.

“You are a natural-born leader,” Blouin told Zeidman. “Your energy and your work ethic are unmatchable. Your empathy and compassion are incredible.”

In her farewell remarks, Zeidman asked that the community continue to engage respectfully with one another and the council in the future.

“We experience the same development and traffic congestion you all experience,” she told the audience. “Our council will protect what we all hold dear, which is to live quietly and peacefully, knowing we are safe. It is no small task, and it is riddled with legal challenges you may not understand.”

Zeidman thanked her colleagues and the community for placing their trust in her for the last eight years.

“To serve has been my greatest honor,” she said.

Civic Association farewell

At Monday’s Annual Meeting of the Palm Beach Civic Association at the Flagler Museum, Michael Pucillo, the association’s chairman and CEO, recognized Zeidman for her service and presented her with a gift – an engraved clock – as an expression of appreciation.

Pucillo, who served on the council from 2011 until 2017, including two years as its president, said Zeidman was an excellent council president who did her own research and analysis and often worked late hours trying to resolve problems.

Zeidman didn’t shy away from the issues and conflicts that are the toughest part of the job, he said.

“Maggie embraced, and executed well, not just the fun part of the job but the really hard part of the job,” Pucillo said.


Our Town sponsored by:

Cleveland Clinic Florida