Fortunato said that she would work on a comprehensive development plan for the town if elected, starting with a survey of residents to find out needs, wants and perceived problems. The goal, she said, is “not to be driven by a general contractor who comes in and says, ‘We want to build three stories.’ We do the driving.” She would also expand the town’s recreation programs and add youth volunteer and work programs, she said.
Fortunato, 57, of the hamlet of Smithtown, is running for public office for the first time. She appears on the Democratic, Working Families and Women’s Equality party lines. Fortunato is a former youth pastor and is a caregiver for her grandchildren. Originally from Freeport, she graduated from Fashion Institute of Technology with a bachelor’s degree in marketing and from New York Theological Seminary with a master of divinity degree. She is married and has three children.