BACKGROUND: Gruber, 66, of East Hampton, is a lawyer seeking a seat on the board via the East Hampton Reform Democrats, a registered campaign finance committee. He is a former chairman of the East Hampton Town Democratic Committee and was its 2001 candidate for town supervisor. Gruber also has served as a trustee and treasurer of the Hampton Day School; co-founded the East Hampton Conservators, a town political action committee; and has served on the East Hampton Airport Noise Citizens Advisory Committee. He earned a bachelor’s in physics at Hampshire College, a law degree at the University of Michigan and two master’s degrees in economics from The New School for Social Research. He ran a statistical arbitrage company and also was an investment principal, acquiring and supervising firms in businesses ranging from fishing trawlers to apparel to bulk trucking. He has two children. Gruber was knocked off the Independence line for November when his nominating petitions were successfully challenged.
ISSUES: Gruber said he is running for the board because he has grown frustrated at the lack of progress on issues such as affordable housing, job opportunities, water quality and coastal erosion, despite working hard for years to help get Democrats elected to tackle those issues. “We need to be faithful stewards in general of the fragile environment here,” he said. “I have great hope I could be more effective.” He wants to use community members’ knowledge and willingness to work. “The only way for us to get things done is to enlist our own residents in that planning process,” Gruber said. “There’s a wide range of skills and experience here in the community. We need to tap into all of it.”