Don Haight
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Donald Haight for Town JusticeDon Haight 2010 v2

Donald W. Haight was born and grew up in Goshen NY and went to college at SUNY Oneonta. He continued to live in Oneonta for many years, commuting to New Berlin to teach high school history and to coach several sports. So he had years of experience with the issues that face college towns in New York before moving to Hamilton 12 years ago.

Don and his wife, Pamela Schriber-Haight, came to Hamilton when she opened “Cranberries” in the village on Broad Street. Now Pam is a self-employed interior designer, working out of their home on Bonney Hill. Their daughter, Alexandra, just graduated from Hamilton Central School in June and is attending Genesee Community College this fall.

Don taught in the Unadilla Valley Central School (New Berlin) system for 33 years. He also was President of the Faculty Association for 25 years, gaining experience in negotiating contracts as well as working with the school board in improving the educational system. He coached football and wrestling on the high school level for 35 years. After retiring to Hamilton, he volunteered as Assistant Coach in football at HCS for two years as well as an Assistant Track coach at Colgate for 2 years.

Don always has been interested in government and in the law. He served on numerous grand juries when living in Otsego County. Both of his two older daughters are lawyers, living in Washington D. C. and in Boston. They have given him four grandchildren. His daughters encouraged him in 2007 when he ran a nearly-successful campaign against a popular incumbent for Town Supervisor. Now they have urged him to run for Town Justice.

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Don’s education and work experience have prepared him to be a good Town Justice. Both teachers and coaches have to be fair, to listen to all sides, to enforce the rules, and to make judgments. His work as a union leader gave him experiences with negotiation, a strategy through which some, but not all, conflicts can be resolved.

Don looks forward to taking the courses offered by New York State for new justices as well as to the on-going mentoring relationship with an experienced judge that now is required. He likes learning new things and will be glad to take whatever additional training the state requires. 

Don Haight is committed to fairness and justice. His experience as a teacher, union president, and coach will benefit him in making tough, hard, and fair decisions as a justice. Now that his retirement allows him time, he seeks ways to give back to his community.

Don is a long-time Democrat, but knows that the role of justice requires a non-partisan orientation. He is concerned that Democrats have so very rarely had the opportunity to serve as justice in Madison County.

Don is a long-time member of the Elks Club and of the Methodist Church. His interest in American history makes him a volunteer each year at the Peterboro Civil War weekend. He is an avid sports fan, loving to follow local teams. Another hobby to which he yearns to return after his hip-replacement heals is Italian cooking.

9/1/09                                         [back to top]