By Angela Barbosa
Elections for the office of Connecticut State Senate will take place in 2016. The primary election will be held on August 9, 2016, and the general election will be held on November 8, 2016.
The 24th district encompasses part of Bethel, Danbury, New Fairfield and Sherman.
Incumbent Michael A. McLachlan (R), who first assumed office in 2009, and ran unopposed in the Republican primary defeating Theodore Feng (Working Families) in the general election on 2014, will have an opponent candidate this election year.
Below are the profiles of both the Republican incumbent and the Democratic opponent running for the 24th State Senate seat.
Sen. Michael McLachlan (R)
State Senator Michael McLachlan (R-24) is serving his third term in the Connecticut State Senate. He is ranking member on the General Assembly’s Government Administration and Elections Committee. He also sits on three other committees: Judiciary, Legislative Management and Transportation.
Prior to being elected to the Senate, Senator McLachlan served as Chief of Staff for Danbury Mayor Mark Boughton following his election in 2001. As chief of staff, Senator McLachlan spearheaded efforts to provide housing for veterans. He also serves on the Danbury Housing Partnership and chairs the veteran’s housing committee that launched the “Housing for Heroes” program in 2008. The program provides shelter, transitional housing and a path to a permanent home.
A Danbury native, Senator McLachlan has a long history of community service and involvement. In 1998, the Danbury Jaycees honored him with the Distinguished Service Award. Kiwanis International presented him the Distinguished President Award in 2001, following his term as leader of the Kiwanis Club of Danbury. He was also received the J. Thayer Bowman Service Award in 2000 by the Danbury Republican Town Committee. Senator McLachlan and his wife Alesia live in Danbury.
Ken Gucker (D)
Ken Gucker, a longtime community activist and Danbury Democratic Town Committee member and Vice Chair, has announced that he is seeking the Democratic Party nomination to run for the 24th State Senate seat for this year’s November 8 election.
Gucker, a resident of Danbury for 28 years, was raised in New Fairfield, attended and graduated from New Fairfield schools, was active in Scouting with Troop 42 where he earned his Eagle Scout Award with Three Palms and served a stint there as a volunteer firefighter. He is a graduate of Western Connecticut State University with a Bachelor of Arts degree. Ken’s parents still reside in their New Fairfield home.
In Danbury, Ken has been active in land use, environmental, conservation and historic preservation issues. Among the local and neighborhood issues at the forefront of his activities, Gucker has been an active leader on matters such as the Cotswold development plan where he fought alongside Danbury neighbors to limit density to balance the need to protect the environment and adjacent water sources.
A tireless leader, advocate and worker, Ken is a small business owner and a nationally renowned auto restoration expert, among his many talents.