LACONIA — Robert Soucy has been appointed as the newest member of the Laconia City Council representing Ward 2.
Following a special meeting on Monday, during which five candidates were interviewed, the council voted 4-1 to elect Soucy to the seat left vacant by the death of David Bownes. Bownes, 71, died at his Prospect Street home on July 4. He had been diagnosed with pancreatic cancer.
Soucy, 70, previously held the seat for a three-year term in the early 1970s, but did not seek reelection when he had the chance to become a full-time Laconia police officer.
“I’m very pleased and excited to serve the city again,” Soucy said on Tuesday.
He said he sees the council as working like a board of directors, and taxpayers as shareholders who expect a return on their investment.
Prior to accepting nominations for the Ward 2 seat, Mayor Andrew Hosmer said he was appreciative so many candidates expressed an interest in joining the council.
Other candidates were former state representative Phil Spagnuolo; Laconia School Board member Laura Dunn; and political newcomers Kelleen Ann Caravona and Gregg Hough.
Ward 6 Councilor Tony Felch nominated Caravona, commenting that several constituents urged him to support her and that he felt bringing diversity to the council whose current membership is all men, “was a plus.”
The nomination failed in a 4-1 vote.
Soucy, a 50-year resident of Woodlawn Avenue, is the father of seven. While working for the Laconia Police Department, he attended Southern New Hampshire University nights and weekends and earned a bachelor’s degree in business management and his MBA in five years.
He works for Aavid, Thermal Division of Boyd Corporation, which manufactures heat sinks for a variety of applications.
The city charter specifies that vacancies occurring in the office of councilor or mayor are to be filled by a majority vote of the city council at the next regular meeting or at a special meeting within 30 days following creation of the vacancy.
Clerk Cheryl Hebert said Tuesday she was prepared to swear Soucy in as soon as his schedule permits. The term expires on Jan. 3, 2022.