The Planning and Zoning Commission has a new member.

The eight-member commission, which serves as the town's Inland Wetlands Board until the upcoming November election, voted to appoint Rich Vazzana at its April 16 meeting.

Vazzana will replace commissioner Bob Cascella who resigned March 26.

“My reason for resigning had to do with conflict between what I do for a living and the large number of property owners who I represent, who also come before the commission,” Cascella told The Press in March.

Cascella, who replaced commissioner Peter Chipouras in February 2017, is a partner at Grove Street Realty.

“I enjoyed the people that I worked with, and I enjoyed the technical aspects of the role,” he added. “I like to think that I added common sense and that my experience was helpful to the commission.”

Cascella, a Republican, was up for re-election in November. Vazzana will take over his seat, with plans to run for re-election in seven months.

Vazzana was interviewed by Hope Wise, chair of the Republican Town Committee, and received her endorsement.  He was the only candidate interviewed. The vote was 5-1 in support of his appointment.

The new zoning commissioner has a background in education and was at IBM for 30 years as a sales executive, according to Chairwoman Rebecca Mucchetti. He has lived in Ridgefield for 20 years and was the vice chair of the 2014 Charter Revision Commission.  

Vazzana has also worked on boards for the Ridgefield Chamber of Commerce, the Lounsbury House, and Rotary Club of Ridgefield.  He is the current President of the Board of Directors for the Ridgefield Symphony Orchestra and is a member of inRidgefield.

In 2018, he was named the Rotary Club's Citizen of the Year.