SOUTH WINDSOR 1ST
Marek is a nearly lifelong resident of South Windsor where he grew up on Griffin Road with his parents and older brother and sister. Marek spent his childhood riding his bike all over town, building forts and trails in the woods, and making money mowing lawns, raking leaves, shoveling driveways, taking out trash cans for elderly. He attended South Windsor Public Schools from kindergarten through graduation. He played football and lacrosse for the high school and he was an All-Conference offensive lineman for the Bobcats. Marek met his wife, Kristen, through a mutual friend and he ultimately married his high school sweetheart.
After his sophomore year was hired by the Town of South Windsor Building Department as an office assistant. He worked part time after school and during school vacations for the next seven years learning the administrative functions of municipal government. Initially hired to do filing and make copies, his experience expanded to managing permit records for Phase I of the Evergreen Walk lifestyles development. Furthermore, he was part of the team of municipal officials tasked to design a program and create policies for establishing a digital archive of municipal files. Marek managed the project for scanning and creating a digital record for the Building Department property files.
Marek attended the University of Connecticut at the time when the State of Connecticut was investing $1 billion to update and expand the university buildings and infrastructure under the UConn 2000 program. Marek became inspired to work in planning and development as he experienced the Storrs campus change and grow around him. Marek earned a BA in Economics and Geography (double major) as an honor’s scholar and later earned a MA in Economics and a Masters in Public Administration (MPA).
Upon graduating in 2004, Marek was hired by the Midstate Regional Planning Agency (Midstate), in Middletown, CT as an Assistant Transportation Planner. Marek engaged in long range transportation planning in the region. Marek coordinated a grant application with member towns and the Middletown Area Transit to expand ADA transportation services in the region. Marek also served as the GIS coordinator for Midstate and the Towns of Durham, Haddam, and Middlefield.
In 2007, Marek left central Connecticut to become a planner for the Town of Greenwich Planning & Zoning Department. Marek gained experience and expertise in a vast array of planning and zoning issues including downtown mixed use development, open space preservation, flood plain management, historic preservation, and upgrading public buildings and infrastructure. Marek helped shape the administrative policies for the department, seeking efficiency in workflow and improve the quality of customer service. Marek became a certified planner by the American Institute of Certified Planners in 2011.
For 10 years, Marek and his wife Kristen lived in West Haven, Connecticut where they renovated from top to bottom a late 19th century Victorian home. There, they grew their family to include their three daughters and a son. They recognized the growing needs of their family, and the desire to return back home, Marek and Kristen moved back to South Windsor to raise their children and give back to the Town of which they owed everything.
In 2018 Marek became Town Planner in Berlin, Connecticut. His time in Berlin was short, only 20 months, but in that time he left a lasting imprint on the Town. Marek updated and modernized the administration of the Planning and Zoning Department. He crafted and advocated for zoning legislation that lead to transit oriented development near the Berlin train station, mixed use development on the Berlin Turnpike, and affordable housing. He also served as Interim Town Manager for a period of time.
In 2019, Marek had the opportunity to become Middletown’s City Planner. Marek is employed by the City of Middletown to this day. In his time in Middletown, Marek help coordinate a reorganization of city department and is now the Director of the newly created Land Use Department, where Marek oversees, planning, zoning, flood plain management, conservation, and environmental protection for the city. Marek’s greatest planning accomplishments in Middletown to date, is providing leadership in the development of a new riverfront master plan, developing the City’s 2020 Plan of Conservation and Development and creating the City’s Affordable Housing Plan. Marek also relooked at the City’s zoning codes for its mixed use development areas and completed a comprehensive rewrite of zoning codes that will spark economic development along its commercial corridors, creation of neighborhood centers, and provide addition housing opportunities in the City. Marek also coordinated the acquisition of over 200 acres of open space for protection of forest land and farmland and expand passive recreational opportunities.
In his spare time, Marek seeks opportunities to contribute in professional organizations and give back to his community. Marek is currently serving his first term as Treasurer for the Connecticut Chapter of the American Planning Association. He has also been active in the planning for the Southern New England American Planning Association (SNEAPA) annual conference which draws up to 700 planners, engineers, architects, landscape architects, academics, students and other professionals in the development community across public and private sectors from Connecticut, Massachusetts, and Rhode Island. Marek has served as Co-Chair for its planning committee for the past three years.
Shortly after moving back to South Windsor, Marek knew he wanted to give back to his hometown in the highest capacity he could. Marek joined the Republican Town Committee (RTC) in 2018, where he was quickly appointed to the Inland Wetlands and Watercourses Commission/Conservation Commission. There he drew from his professional background to assist in the evaluation of development projects coming into town. In the 2019 municipal election, Marek won a seat on the Board of Education. Marek served on the Board for one term, where he played a role in the navigating the schools through the COVID-19 pandemic, creation of the new Director of Diversity and Inclusion, and implementation of the strategic plan.
In 2021, Marek left the Board of Education after winning a seat on the Town Council, where he served as the Minority Party Leader. Since joining the Council, Marek worked to fill vacant seats on various town committee and advocated for appointments to other town boards and commissions. He also coordinated ordinance revision to allow bid preferences for local farmers in the leasing of Town-owned farmland.
When Marek joined the RTC, he was excited and proud for the opportunity to serve his town, and was humbled by the committee nominating him to run on the republican slates in 2019 and 2021. Marek enjoyed participating in committee events including the annual Strawberry Festival. As time passed, Marek noticed that there was a growing shift in the committee’s ideology and priorities, and they were no longer falling in line with his point of view.
In March 2022, along with a group of other current and past elected official, decided to move on from their respective parties and formed a new political party. They are going to move forward as members of the new United Community Party, which will become a party that is recognized by the State of Connecticut after the November 8th election. Marek played a key role in formation of the party bylaws and the development of the party’s guiding principles: Unite through Community Service; Support 21st; Century Education; Rise above Divisive Politics; and Achieve Balanced Growth.
In May 2022, the United Community Party decided to run Marek for State Representative, 14th District. They found Marek to be a suitable candidate would has a wealth of knowledge and experience that he can draw from as he serves South Windsor in the General Assembly.
Support Marek by donating to his campaign.
Paid for by Marek Kozikowski for South Windsor, Phil Koboski, Treasurer