Edward D. Mooradian, a retired Depew Middle School principal, announced Tuesday he is seeking the endorsement of the Amherst Republican Committee in his bid to unseat Democratic Supervisor Susan J. Grelick in November.
Mooradian said he wants to bring responsibility and accountability to the helm of the largest suburb in Erie County.
"I think the town lacks leadership," he said. "I'm not sure we're getting substance (with Grelick)."
Mooradian declined to articulate specific positions he will take in the campaign, saying he plans to study town issues in depth in the coming weeks and formulate his positions once he does more research.
He did, however, point to three areas of concern: the town's lack of adequate liability insurance, a lack of oversight of funds at the Audubon Golf Course and problems at the town's wastewater treatment plant.
"I think we need someone who can roll up their sleeves and work with department heads," Mooradian said.
He says his extensive background in academics and athletics gives him the experience to deal with diverse constituencies.
He taught biology, health and physical education at Williamsville South High School from 1965 to 1970, when he also coached varsity football there. Mooradian went on to serve as assistant principal at Williamsville North High School from 1970 to 1979.
He then became principal at Depew Middle School, a job he held until his retirement in 1996.
He holds a bachelor's degree from the University at Buffalo, where he played Division I football. He earned a master's degree from the University of Maryland and a doctorate from UB.
When the town's GOP leadership approached Mooradian in late fall about running for supervisor, he was not shocked. He had considered the idea more than once, he said.
Mooradian says he is able to build consensus.
"I'm going to be honest with people," he said. "I'm going to be civil with people."
Mooradian, a native of Hamilton, Ont., has lived in Williamsville since 1973. His wife of 34 years, Doreen, died in 1997 of ovarian cancer.
The couple's twin children, Elizabeth and Stephen, graduated from Williamsville South in 1981.
Elizabeth DiLuzio is now an elementary school teacher who lives in East Amherst. Stephen is a commercial airline pilot living in Hanover, Pa.
Town Republican Chairman Robert Gilmour said Mooradian, as of Tuesday, was the only candidate known to be interested in seeking the committee's endorsement. The town GOP committee will vote to endorse a candidate Thursday at its monthly meeting.
Republican Councilman Bill Kindel announced his candidacy last week.
He said he will not seek the GOP endorsement but will run as an independent in the September primary, hoping voters will put him on the Republican Party line on November ballots. He also will seek several minor-party lines.
Like Kindel, Mooradian also is seeking endorsements from the Conservative and Independence parties.
Mooradian said he will be looking to the party leadership to help him raise the $50,000 or more he will need to take on Kindel in September.