Cheektowaga Dems make endorsements for town-wide offices

CHEEKTOWAGA – Cheektowaga Democratic Town Committee Chairperson Matt Janiszewski announced that the Cheektowaga Democratic Town Committee voted to endorse candidates for eight town-wide offices to be on the ballot in November’s general election.

The committee made the following endorsements:

Town Supervisor:
Diane Benczkowski (unanimous)

Highway Superintendent:
Mark Wegner (Unanimous)

Town Board (three openings for a four-year term):
Christine Adamczyk, Linda Hammer & Jerry Kaminski (unanimous)

Town Board (to fill a two-year vacancy):
Rick Rusiniak (Received 87.5% of the vote)

Town Clerk:
Kim Burst (Received 90.4% of the vote)

Town Justice:
Dave Stevens (Received 53.5% of the vote)

“We have endorsed an extremely qualified and strong slate of candidates to help Cheektowaga continue to move in the right direction, and we are proud to give them our full support,” said Cheektowaga Democratic Town Chairperson Matt Janiszewski. “It was very important for our committee to express unity and support for our current town leaders and the positive direction that our town continues to move in each and every day.  Our candidates and committee members will be working hard starting later this month talking to voters about our amazing slate.” 

“I’m excited to lead and work with such an amazingly talented group of public servants,” said Cheektowaga Supervisor Diane Benczkowski.  “Throughout the last three years, our town has been able to bring in over $17 million in grants; keep tax increases lower than the increase in CPI and lower than neighboring towns; make important improvements to our infrastructure; and reduce the number of vacant houses.  The momentum is undeniable and we need to elect this unified team to continue moving in the right direction.”


10About Diane Benczkowski

Supervisor Diane Benczkowski takes notes during a community forum on August 27th at South Line Fire Company. (Jim Herr/Cheektowaga Chronicle)

Born and raised in Cheektowaga, Diane Benczkowski was elected Supervisor in November 2015.  She previously served two years as a Councilmember and 12 years as a member of the Depew Board of Education.  As a real estate professional, Diane spent more than 25 years helping seniors, young families and business professionals find housing in Cheektowaga and in the Western New York area.  As a member of the Buffalo Niagara Association of Realtors’ Government Affairs Committee, she advocated for homeowners all across New York State.  Buffalo Business First recently named Diane to the Power 250 Most Influential People List and Power 125 Women List.  Diane also earned the special honor of being inducted into the Depew Alumni Wall of Fame in 2018.  Diane and her husband, Ken, raised their three daughters – Dana, Kelly and Tara – in the Town of Cheektowaga.  She recently celebrated a newcomer to the family with the birth of her first grandchild, Owen.

9About Mark Wegner

Mark Wegner presents Operation: Flags of Freedom as part of the town’s Freedom Fest celebrations on July 3rd. (Jim Herr/Cheektowaga Chronicle)

Mark Wegner has been Highway Superintendent since 2008.  He was first hired as a laborer in 1984 and worked his way up through the ranks when he first ran for office in 2007.  He was a volunteer firefighter with Doyle 2 and Bellevue fire companies.  Under his leadership, the Highway Department paves between 8-10% of town roads each year. 



8About Christine Adamczyk

Chronicle file photo of Councilmember Christine Adamczyk.

Christine Adamczyk was first elected to the Town Board in 2014 and was re-elected to a full term in 2015.  She previously served on the Cheektowaga Central School District Board of Education.  Her current committee assignments include: Police/Courts/Animal Control; Sanitation/Recycling; Street Lighting & Signs; Capital Projects; Engineering, Sewer & Pump Station; and Conservation Advisory Committee.


7About Linda Hammer

Councilmembers Linda Hammer and Christine Adamczyk check out a hybrid car outside the town hall on October 10th. (Jim Herr/Cheektowaga Chronicle)

Linda Hammer was first elected to the Town Board in 2015.  She previously served as a Trustee in the Village of Depew.  Her current committee assignments include: IT & Records Management; Law Office; Traffic & Public Safety; Purchasing & Inventory Control; Board of Ethics; Town Clerk & Tax Office.




6About Jerry Kaminski

Council Member Gerald Kaminski doesn’t like the delay tactics from the banks. At the public hearing for 17 Yvette Drive on March 28, 2017. (Jim Herr/Cheektowaga Chronicle)

Jerry Kaminski was first elected to the Town Board in 2011.  He is a lifelong resident of the Town of Cheektowaga.  He owns a trucking equipment company with his two sons, Jerry Jr. and Jamie.  His current committee assignments include: Labor Negotiations; Central Garage; Assessments; Libraries; Arts and Culture; and Fire Districts.


5About Rick Rusiniak

Rick Rusiniak is currently the Town Historian and is a trustee with the Cheektowaga Historical Association.  Rick is a small business owner and previously worked as a service manager and superintendent with Buffalo Crushed Stone.  He served as a volunteer firefighter with the Bellevue Fire Department.


4About Kim Burst

Kim Burst worked as Deputy Tax Receiver in the Tax Office and Town Clerk’s Office from 2002 to 2012.  She has worked in the Town Supervisor’s Office since then as Assistant to the Supervisor.  Kim has a degree in Business Management from D’Youville College and previously worked for Assemblymember Paul Tokasz.  You can follow her on Facebook at “Kim Burst for Cheektowaga Town Clerk”.


3About Dave Stevens

Dave Stevens campaign photo. (Contributed)

Dave Stevens is a lifelong resident of the Town of Cheektowaga and a 1982 graduate of Maryvale Senior High School.  He and his wife Lisa have raised five children and are grandparents to five boys.  Dave has nearly 29 years of experience in law enforcement and currently holds the position of Detective with the Cheektowaga Police Department.  He was previously a New York State Corrections Officer.  You can follow him on Facebook at “Dave Stevens for Cheektowaga Town Justice”.


2About Matt Janiszewski

Chronicle file photo of Matt Janiszewski.

Matt Janiszewski was elected Chairperson in November 2016 and is currently serving his second two-year term after being unanimously re-elected in October 2018.  He has been a resident of the Town of Cheektowaga for more than 20 years and brings a wealth of campaign experience to the position of Chair as he has managed, worked for and volunteered with numerous municipal, county, state and federal campaigns. A 2011 graduate of Canisius College, he also studied at The George Washington University’s Semester in Washington Program during the Spring 2010 semester.  He currently works in the office of Cheektowaga Supervisor Diane Benczkowski serving as Assistant to the Supervisor. When elected, he promised to rebuild the Democratic Party in Cheektowaga through increased participation and creating a more open and inclusive environment.


1About the Cheektowaga Democratic Town Committee

The Cheektowaga Democratic Town Committee is composed of 190 duly elected or appointed committee members representing the registered Democratic voters in each of the 95 election districts of the town. The Cheektowaga Democratic Committee is a subdivision of the Erie County Democratic Committee and can be found on Facebook at “Cheektowaga Democratic Committee” or on Twitter at @CKTWdems.


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