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8 letters backing Mitropoulos

Carol Greeley of Temple Street, Arlington, submitted this letter.

Nicholas Mitropoulos

Ten years ago this month, when my late husband, Brian Greeley, passed away unexpectedly five days after attending a Housing Authority Meeting (and as chair at the time), two of the first people to come rushing to my home were Nick and Marie Mitropoulos.

I'd known them for many years before then, more as acquaintances than close friends, but the compassion shown my then-10-year-old son and me at a particularly distressing time can never be forgotten. Nick was one of the people that had convinced Brian to run for his seat on the Housing Authority in the beginning and reminded him of the extremely important difference they would be making for the residents assisted throughout town by the AHA.

Recently when someone I knew was having problems in their apartment at Drake Village, Nick was right there following up that promises made to them were kept. And they were! Is there room for improvement -- I'm sure of it. We are always improving - or should be in any organization IMHO.

Honesty, integrity, compassion and commitment are the qualities I look for in a candidate, and I'm proud to say I find Nick Mitropoulos excels on all levels. Please join me in supporting a gentleman of the highest caliber for reelection to the Arlington Housing Authority. Thank you for your consideration.


This letter to the editor was published Wednesday, April 7, 2021.


Brian Connor, the governor’s appointed commissioner to the Arlington Housing Authority, supports Nicholas Mitropoulos for reelection.

As a resident of Arlington for almost 60 years, I cannot recall another election that has stirred up the worst in people, the negativity, lies, accusations -- they are all truly un-Arlington.

I thought I would stay out of this race and let it take its course; however, the more I read, understand and research, I now feel it’s my responsibility as someone who has served for almost 10 years on the AHA board with Nick, to voice why I firmly believe Nick Mitropoulos must be reelected.

First and foremost, he has served on this board for the past 20 years. Do not misunderstand me; that’s a long time. However, up until now, there has been little interest from anyone else in town who wanted to run for this seat. There is no glory in sitting on the housing board, no fanfare, no ribbon-cutting ceremonies, no free lunches. The only satisfaction is knowing you are helping to make a difference for our senior citizens and our families living in the Manor, hoping to make their lives a little better each day. Nick has unselfishly spent 33-plus percent of his lifetime doing this; that is a true sign of a commitment.

Second, he is a proven executive and businessman. He’s run companies with valuations from $1 million to $1 billion. He understands large complex structural and financial issues and knows how to help find solutions. Through his 20 years on the AHA board, he also knows and understands the many state and federal regulatory issues and responsibilities. This is why the Arlington Housing Authority, unlike others, are financially secure and have never been involved in unethical or illegal matters. Nick is most qualified to continue in this role.

Third, he is kind, understanding and listens to everyone. As chairman, he lets everyone participate in the monthly meetings, even when they have attacked him personally. He looks to find the solutions, not put up barriers. Of course, like any major landlord, there will always be tenant issues, facility issues and interesting discussions, like shopping carts. No one can please everyone, but his way of trying to look for solutions is representative of his past board experience, education, commitment and knowledge of the system that has worked somewhat flawlessly for many years.

The Arlington Housing Board is not a fad, hobby or a steppingstone; it’s a five-year commitment, not to be taken lightly. Nick Mitropoulos has been committed to the AHA for the past 20 years and he is willing to continue for the next five years. The tenants' associations want him, the board members want him, and I hope the citizens of Arlington would recognize that he is clearly the most qualified candidate and will want him to continue, too!

I urge you to vote with me on April 10 to reelect Nick Mitropoulos to the Arlington Housing Authority!


This letter to the editor was published Saturday, April 3, 2021.


Mariann Donovan, secretary, Drake Village Tenants Association, submitted this letter.

As a 10-year resident of the Arlington Housing Authority and an officer of the Drake Village Tenants Association, I would like to clear up misunderstandings about the Arlington Housing Authority.

I urge you to reelect Nick Mitropoulos to the AHA Board because he and his colleagues have accomplished so much.

First, are the majority of AHA tenants treated with disrespect? The most recent state-mandated survey conducted by the Center for Survey Research at UMass Boston in 2016 - 2018 reveals they are not. The social scientists reported the vast majority of AHA, both seniors (90%) and families and scatter-site residents (86%), responded “that they were usually or always treated with respect when they contacted management.” A total of 520 senior housing units were surveyed and 183 family and scatter sites units.

The AHA results compare well when compared looking at the results for all large housing authorities in greater Boston and at those in the entire state. In the greater Boston area, 83% of seniors reported “Felt they were usually or always treated with courtesy and respect when they contacted management” while families and scatter site residents reported 80%.The percentages for the whole state are 87% for seniors and 76% for family and scatter site residents.

These surveys and other important information can be found on the newly revamped AHA website under “Annual Plan for Fiscal year 2021.” The surveys are in the back of Section 9 under Other Elements (see the link here >>). To understand the graphs it is important to note that Chapters 200 and 705 housing represents Family and Scattered Site housing while Chapter 667 represents Senior Housing.

Second, does the AHA apply for outside funding? AHA regularly applies for funding to enhance its properties and develop new programs. Just this year (2021), the Arlington Community Preservation Act Committee awarded AHA $251,793 to repair the leaky doors in the cottages at Drake Village. In 2020, the CPA awarded AHA $500,000 for Winslow Towers envelope repairs.

Other than CPA, AHA applied for state grants. In collaboration with residents, AHA and Drake Village applied for a grant from the state Creative Placemaking competition. AHA was awarded $500,000. The grant will be used for improved sidewalks, landscaping, a raised community garden appropriate for seniors, and a bocci court.

More substantial repairs and improvements to other residences are detailed in the five- year Capital Improvement Plan (CIP) found in the 2021 Annual Plan in Section 2.1, pp.1-4

As part of that plan will be added a professional assessment of the Menotomy Manor leaky windows and doors to furnish the necessary data for securing funding.

Third, how are the tenants staying in touch? Although initially held back by COVID, tenants have managed to stay in touch with via their tenant associations.

The one exception is Menotomy Manor. Due to internal conflicts, the tenant association fell apart nine years ago and no tenants came forward to re-establish it.

This year, when the Menotomy Manor residents showed up at the Board meetings with multiple complaints, it was clear that a tenant association was needed to advocate for them.

The board’s role, according to state regulations, is tricky: the Board is to “encourage” tenants associations but is not allowed to take an active role. The board gave the organizing committee a space in the Daly Community Center, access to copying leaflets, and representation at the monthly meeting with the head of maintenance.

Nick Mitropoulos’ continued steady leadership, extensive financial expertise, and institutional knowledge will ensure the Arlington Housing Authority will be able to serve low-income and very low-income tenants.

I like to think of Nick as a businessman with a heart who is always helping others and does extensive community service. In the past, he has won two awards for his community service:

  • George P. Faulkner Annual Citizens Award for Outstanding Service to Youth (Arlington Boys & Girls Club); and
  • Tim Graham Service to Youth Award (Fidelity House).

Please join me in reelecting this most honorable man. 


This letter to the editor was published Wednesday, March 31, 2021.


 Kenneth W. Hughes of Webster Street, Arlington, submitted this letter.

I have known Nick Mitropoulos for over 50 years, and he is by far one of Arlington’s most dedicated public officials that I have ever met. He genuinely loves Arlington and all of its citizens. He does not care if you have been here only one week or your whole life because you are all equally important to him.

Where does one begin to list the accomplishments of Nick in his service to the Town of Arlington, for they are so numerous?

Let me start by highlighting two of his crowning successes as a board member of the Arlington Housing Authority -- responding to the Covid crisis and mentoring the youth of Arlington.

Under the leadership of Nick Mitropoulos, the Arlington Housing Authority has responded admirably during the Covid pandemic. The incidents of Covid cases have been considerably fewer in Arlington public housing compared to those of many of our neighboring communities because, in large part, to the safety measures and protocols enacted by the Arlington Housing Authority

While having been a volunteer in the Operation Success Program in Menotomy Manor, I have personally seen the positive impact it has on Arlington’s middle- and high school-age students. The program has continued to grow in the years that Mitropoulos has been on the board.

Let me briefly mention some other contributions Nick has made to the Arlington community. He has coached for many years in the town’s youth sports programs. He is president of the Arlington Touchdown Club.

Nick actively serves on the board of Fidelity House and is an incorporator of the Arlington Boys & Girls Club.

For his dedication of service to the youths of Arlington, he has been recognized with two of Arlington’s most prestigious awards: the George P. Faulkner Annual Citizens Award, for outstanding service to youth from the Arlington Boys & Girls Club, and the Tim Graham Service to Youth Award, from the Fidelity House.

I am proud to call Nick Mitropoulos my friend, and I am proud to endorse him for a seat on the board of the Arlington Housing Authority.

Please afford him the opportunity to continue to do his good work for all of the people of Arlington. Please vote for Nick Mitropoulos. Thank you. 


This letter to the editor was published Wednesday, March 31, 2021.


 

Katherine Johnson of Drake Road, who has no computer access, submitted this letter via Mariann Donovan.

I live at Drake Village, part of the Arlington Housing Authority, and I am asking you to please vote for Nick Mitropoulos.

As chair of the AHA board this year, he allowed residents to speak at length about their issues at the AHA board meetings and makes sure there is a plan to address them right after they speak. He has always been accessible to residents and treats them with great respect.


This letter to the editor was published Thursday, March 25, 2021.


Harold W. Legge of Drake Road, who has no computer access, submitted this letter via Mariann Donovan.

I am a Housing Authority resident. Please vote for Nick Mitropoulos for AHA. The AHA is a stable organization and this is true in large part because of Nick’s leadership. He has a deep understanding of both state and federal regulations and has the experience to continue to provide us all with stable housing.

Please vote for Nick for the Housing Authority.


This letter to the editor was published Thursday, March 25, 2021.


Dorothy Rulon of Drake Road, who has no computer access, submitted this letter via Mariann Donovan.

Please vote for Nick Mitropoulos for the Arlington Housing Authority. With an MBA and extensive experience in business, Nick has made sure the Arlington Housing Authority has always been on a secure financial footing.

His business expertise has allowed the AHA to operate in the black and pass regular state required audits.

Thank you for your consideration.


This letter to the editor was published Monday, March 22, 2021.


Joseph J. Santore of Drake Road, who has no computer access, submitted this letter via Mariann Donovan.

My fellow residents and I feel safe with Nick Mitropoulos on the Board of the AHA. He has both the credentials and experience to excel at carrying out the stated duties of a Arlington Housing Authority Board member: to approve contracts, review complex monthly and yearly budgets, and to develop new policies and programs to meet the needs of the residents.

Kindly vote for Nick for the Arlington Housing Authority!


This letter to the editor was published Monday, March 22, 2021.


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