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Oct 28, 2019 7:06 PMPublication: The Southampton Press

Rana, Strong Face Off, Again, For East Hampton Town Justice

Lisa Rana
Oct 29, 2019 11:48 AM
By Michael Wright

In addition to the higher profile races for the town's legislative boards, there is a contested race for one of the two seats on the East Hampton Town Justice Court bench as well as uncontested races for tax assessor and highway superintendent.

Town Justice Lisa Rana and Andrew Strong will face off at the polls for a seat on the town bench for the second time this year. Ms. Rana, a Republican who has been cross-endorsed by the Democrats in the past and had screened for their endorsement this year, forced a primary for the Democratic Party line back in June but lost the bid to knock Mr. Strong off the fall ballot by a wide margin, among only registered Democratic Party voters.

Ms. Rana has been a town justice since 2004 and is seeking reelection to a fifth four-year term on the bench.

Ms. Rana grew up in Amagansett. After graduating from Hampshire College she worked as a foster care caseworker for the City of New York and volunteered as a rape crisis counselor. After getting a law degree at Touro Law School, she worked as an administrative law judge and then chief of staff for the New York City Taxi and Limousine Commission.

She returned to East Hampton in 2002 and ran for town justice in 2003. Ms. Rana is currently one of two town justices. The other is Justice Steven Tekulsky, a Democrat.

Mr. Strong is a political newcomer making his first bid for an elected post.

A native of Chicago and father of three, Mr. Strong now lives in Springs and is the legal counsel for the Latino community advocacy group OLA of Eastern Long Island and has a private practice in East Hampton.

He attended Northwestern University Law School. Both during and after his law studies Mr. Strong worked for several years as a legal aide during two war crimes trials at The Hague in the wake of the 1990s war for the control of Kosovo. Locally, he also worked at LandMarks, an Amagansett land use and planning firm.

Incumbent tax assessors Jeanne Nielsen, a Democrat, and Jill Massa, a Republican, are running unopposed for new terms in their posts, as is Highway Superintendent Stephen Lynch, who was elected to his post as a Republican in 2011 but has switched his registration to the Democratic Party and is now seeking a third term in the office.

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