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“Kevin is someone irreplaceable.” 

-- Robert Greeley

UPDATED, Aug. 19: William Zagata was elected the interim member of the Board of Assessors at the Aug. 16 combined Select Board/Board of Assessors meeting. This spot fills the vacancy left by Kevin Feeley, who passed away in June, and had served for 35 years. 

“I do not use the word 'replace,' because Kevin is someone unreplaceable,” said Board of Assessors Chair Robert Greeley. “Kevin served the town for roughly 70 years, including as a Town Meeting member and on the Select Board. I never met a classier man of integrity than Kevin.”

A moment of silence was held for Feeley.

Zagata was elected in a 4-2 vote. Select Board members Steve DeCourcey, Eric Helmuth, John Hurd and Diane Mahon voted yes; Select Board member Len Diggins voted for Gordon Jamieson, and Greeley voted for James Doherty. Zagata, a five-year Arlington resident, will serve until the next annual town election in April 2022.

Five candidates sought this spot: Zagata, along with Jamieson, Doherty, Guillermo Hamlin and Phillip Lohnes.


Board of Assessor member Mary Winstanley O'Connor attended but recused herself from the vote, because she is an attorney representing Doherty in the proposed Heights hotel.

Zagata is a certified general real estate appraiser, serving in the greater Boston area for 15 years. 

“Working as an appraiser for and against towns gives me a great perspective that can help the board. I’d like a chance to fill the interim position and, if things go well, will to run for the three-year position after that,” said Zagata at the meeting. 

In his application letter, Zagata wrote, “I have been involved with the valuation of a variety of property types including multifamily residential developments, luxury homes and condominiums and Class A office buildings. I have also been involved with a number of challenging valuation and consulting assignments involving commercial and residential properties in Somerville, Cambridge and Medford.”

Hamlin and Lohnes challenged Feeley in last April's election but lost. Jamieson ran for the board in 2020 and lost.

Doherty had served on the Board of Assessors for many years before applying to be director of assessments in 2014 and then dropped out of consideration.

Watch the meeting broadcast by ACMi:

Aug. 16, 2021: All agenda documents related to the appointment

This agenda was published Tuesday, Aug. 10, 2021, and updated Aug. 15 and 16. It was updated to a summary by freelancer Susan Gilbert on Aug. 17. It was updated Aug. 19, to add ACMi video window.