Gomez resigns from Tisbury’s select board

Citing a health issue, Gomez full of thanks to the town.

Larry Gomez has resigned from the Tisbury Select Board effective October 1. — Rich Saltzberg

Tisbury select board chair Larry Gomez has resigned effective Oct. 1. Gomez was in the third year of his three-year term on the board. For his present term, he beat out former select board member Melinda Loberg in 2020. He’s been absent from several meetings in the past few months. He told The Times Thursday this was due to a stroke. 

At the end of Wednesday’s select board meeting, vice chair Roy Cutrer made an announcement about Gomez, who was not present at the meeting. “I’m really sorry to have to announce this,” Cutrer said. “Larry Gomez has tendered his resignation as of Oct. 1.”

“We’ll miss having Larry,” town administrator Jay Grande said. “I don’t have anything more. It’s not really discussable.”

A copy of Gomez’s resignation letter obtained by The Times indicates he is stepping down due to “health issues.”

In a statement to The Times on Thursday, Cutrer wrote, “I’d like to thank Larry Gomez for his years of service and his dedication to the town of Tisbury. Personally, I will miss his guidance as the board chair.”

In an interview with The Times at his bed and breakfast, Greenwood House, Gomez said after suffering a stroke, he didn’t think he could remain on the board. Gomez said he’s 77, and came to the Vineyard almost 40 years ago from the San Francisco Bay area. (He would often be seen wearing an SF cap to board meetings, in recognition of the Bay Area teams.) He said he’s served the town since 2000, with 15 years on the finance committee and two terms as a select board member. Gomez said after his first term on the select board he didn’t anticipate running again. However, the 2018 Tisbury School project failure changed his mind. “I was very upset,” Gomez said. 

Gomez voted in favor of the project, while former select board member Tristan Israel voted no, and former select board member Melinda Loberg abstained. “The only regret I have is I didn’t do enough to convince the two selectmen to vote yes,” he said. 

Gomez said he has fond memories of working with townspeople and town staff. “Everybody I worked with was great,” he said. “Jay Grande is a topnotch guy.”

Gomez had kind words for former executive assistant to Grande Alexandra Ben David. “I miss her,” he said. “I wish her the best of luck.”

He also thanked Asa Jones for her longtime service to the town.

Gomez had high praise for heath agent Maura Valley, especially for her work during the pandemic. He made special note of the communications burden she shouldered throughout the thick of the pandemic.

Gomez said he’s “enjoyed working with the police department for years,” and said all town departments do a great job.

Reflecting on former finance committee members who’ve passed, Bruce Lewellyn and George Balco (also a Port Council member) Gomez said, “I miss them.”

Gomez called town accountant Suzanne Kennedy “fantastic,” and said “she knows her business.” Gomez gave a special compliment to Geoghan Coogan and Jeff Kristal for mentoring him in the ways of the select board.

Gomez said Cutrer “stepped up when I had my stroke,” and thanked him for taking the helm of the chairmanship “perfectly.”

Gomez said he plans to remain in the loop on town affairs, and hopes to join the select board Zooms as an audience member. 

With a bit of humor, he said his stroke hasn’t affected his ability to play golf, but he’s still bad at it. 

When asked what the town should do to fill the vacancy on the select board, he said that’s a question for town clerk Hilary Conklin. Conklin couldn’t immediately be reached for comment.

Grande told The Times he was unsure how and when the vacancy will be filled. He said he plans to consult with Conklin and town counsel.

When West Tisbury had a vacancy due to the death of select board member Kent Healy last fall, the board decided to go with two members until the April election. The other option was a special election to fill the vacancy.


  1. Thanks for all of your good work, Larry, and best wishes for a full recovery and a long run of good health. (Here’s also hoping your golf game improves.)

  2. Thank you so much, Larry, for all of the years of service you have given the town of Tisbury. As a member of the town’s Finance and Advisory Committee, you could be counted on to provide a thoughtful evaluation of the town’s annual budget and a practical approach to expenditures. We were fortunate as a town that you brought your FinCom experience and familiarity with all of its departments and its governance to your role as a Selectman. Your practical opinions and calm demeanor also were an asset to the board. Best wishes for your continued recovery, and much appreciation for all you’ve done for Tisbury residents.

  3. Well, I ran against you and you were for a symmetrical road so I was so pleased you won and I did not have to deal with the stress. Tristan really messed up so many times and the new school is just another stress point. Thank you for your service, you were always a breath of fresh air and clarity – excepting the rental of our ball park for loud music of course, but perhaps that can be corrected. Thank you and relax now, you did what you could.

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