Elections Government Politics

Meet the Candidate: Mark Zydanowicz

Mark Zydanowicz. Courtesy photo

We-Ha.com is offering our readers the opportunity to meet the candidates running in the Nov. 7, 2023 municipal election. 

Compiled by Ronni Newton

We-Ha.com is offering our readers the opportunity to “Meet the Candidate” – designed to help them get to know the candidates running for office in the 2023 municipal election.

Identical questionnaires have been sent to all candidates, and each profile received has been submitted directly to We-Ha.com by the candidate or the candidate’s campaign management. The responses have not been edited but have been formatted to match our publication style. Questions left blank have been deleted.

As profiles are received, they will be published on We-Ha.com under the “Government” tab. We-Ha.com is not making endorsements of any political candidates but we are publishing this information in order to assist voters in being informed and prepared when they go to the polls on Nov. 7.

If you are a candidate and wish to submit a profile, please return it by email to Ronni Newton at [email protected] as soon as possible.


Name: Mark Zydanowicz

Party affiliation: Republican

Family information: Mark Zydanowicz and his wife Nella have lived in West Hartford since 1998. They have three children, Jenna, a college senior attending UCONN, Ryan a college freshman attending Syracuse, Julia a senior attending Hall High School.

Primary occupation:  Mark was an owner and third generation family member of Guida’s Dairy, it was one of the largest independent dairies in New England which was founded by his grandfather in 1947. However, they sold the business where Mark helped transition with the new ownership. Zydanowicz business experience provides him with the acumen vital to understanding the importance of solid leadership and accountability to staff and clients; characteristics he considers critical in any role. He’s a retired Engineer officer from the Connecticut Army National Guard. An Iraq war veteran where he earned the Combat Action Badge and Bronze Star.

Pervious political experience: Mark has served as a commissioner on the West Hartford’s Zoning Board of Appeals, 2nd Vice Chairman – 1st District for the state party and is served 9 years West Hartford Board of Education where he has served on the Policy Committee and the Financial Examiner as well as the union contract negation team. Mark has served the last 2 years on Town Council.

Other relevant experience that may be related to your desire to serve the community, and further qualifies you for the office you are seeking: My 11 year voting record along with my commonsense approach, proven leadership and experience outlines the framework and foundation of the proven experience needed.

Why are you running for office? After 9 years of successful work on the Board of Education and our school system, and 2 years on town council, I want to continue bring my proven experience and leadership and continue working with all by developing ideas through deliberation with all opinions being heard and considered. With three children who call West Hartford home, I want to ensure a future, where our kids can come back after college and still afford to live in this great community. 

There have recently been numerous residential and commercial developments considered by the Town Council, and there are others in the pipeline. What is your overall opinion of the pace of development in West Hartford?  The building projects that have come in front of the town council the last two years have been properties which have been neglected, unused and unattractive. So, I’m excited for the current improvements instore for West Hartford. There are many communities around us and throughout Connecticut whose growth and development have stagnated. Our well-intentioned local zoning and development is an indication West Hartford is a desirable community, driving people and companies to raise a family and run businesses.

What issue(s) are your primary area of focus? I want a West Hartford that works for everyone. So, I have simple platform which address many issues around town today;

  1. Improve transportation infrastructure and support local businesses
    • Keep Zoning Local
    • Allocate funding to improve our local roadways
    • Treat businesses equally, not based on zones
    • Provide funding to handle MDC sewer/water issues
  2. Enhance support of schools
  3. Reduce crime and promote community safety and security for our neighborhoods
    • Support police with the appropriate resources to reduce crime
    • Allocate resources to DPW to maintain parks, sports fields and safe sidewalks
  4. Fiscal responsibility
    • Develop property tax structure that is fair and equal to all residents
    • Protect the town from adding new debt
    • Don’t just provide affordable housing – Make West Hartford affordable.

What do you feel is the biggest challenge facing West Hartford today, and how do you plan to address it if elected? Keeping the community safe is a priority, not just in the center, but the entire town. The town council adopted Vision Zero in January 2023, which I supported, it’s “premised on the fundamental principle that loss of life and serious injury from traffic crashes is unacceptable, yet acknowledges that while people make mistakes, the town’s roadway network should be designed to ensure that those inevitable mistakes do not result in severe injuries or deaths”.

Along with Vision Zero, we must ensure our police and fire departments are given the tools and support needed to be successful in protecting our community,

What do you feel differentiates you from other candidates also running for this position? I have 11 years of experience of public votes, negotiating and insight of the process. I’ve been at the table during some of the toughest deliberations. Although challenging work, it is often some of the most rewarding, ensuring the town has the tools, finances and flexibility to make our schools and town considerably safer and working for everyone.

I also bring a tremendous amount of institutional knowledge surrounding how municipal and capital budgets are planned, designed, allocated and executed by line item.

After 11 years of public service with the Board of Ed and Town Council, I’m proud to stand on my record. I hope the community knows how passionate I am and how I have brought a reasonable and commonsense approach to my years of public service. I hope to continue serving this great community with your vote in November.

Anything else you would like to share? I would like to thank the community for allowing me to serve the last 11 years with their vote, trust and support, which continues to humbled me every day.  I hope the voters of West Hartford continues to support me this November.

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