Tom Ayres Plans to Move, Resign From Burlington City Council | Off Message

Tom Ayres Plans to Move, Resign From Burlington City Council


  • File: Matthew Thorsen
  • Tom Ayres
Burlington City Councilor Tom Ayres said he plans to resign from the council after accepting a new job in Randolph.

The Ward 7 Democrat likely won't step down until June, at which time the city will hold a special election to fill his seat, he said.

Ayres has accepted a position as executive director of the Chandler Center for the Arts and plans to move to Randolph, some 60 miles south of Burlington. He left a job as executive director of First Night Burlington.

Ayres had not formally announced his resignation, but said he planned to submit a letter on Thursday evening to the Bob Rusten, the city's chief administrative officer.

The announcement comes a month after Town Meeting Day, when three Democrats won election to give the party six of the council's 12 seats. The city must hold a special election within 90 days to fill his seat, according to Ayres.

He and his wife Anne Barrett are finalizing the purchase of a home in Randolph, Ayres said, though they won't relocate until they sell their home in the New North End. Ayres has lived in Burlington since 2010 and in Chittenden County since 1990.

Ayres said he is not "actively looking" for a successor. He expects to leave the council at the end of June — "unless we sell our Burlington house sooner, which I don't really anticipate," he said.

He decided to announce "out of respect for my fellow councilors." Council President Jane Knodell is in the process of  determining committee appointments and Ayres said he won't ask to return as chair of the License Committee.

Before working at First Night, he held positions with the Flynn Center for the Performing Arts, the United Way, and the Humane Society of Chittenden County. He started working at the Chandler on Monday.

Ayres' term expires in March 2018.