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Hanover town clerk recusing herself from town election

At the request of the Hanover town clerk, town clerks from Marshfield and Northborough will run the Hanover town election on May 11, with the help of Plympton’s assistant town clerk.

Hanover Town Clerk Catherine Harder-Bernier said she’s recusing herself from the election because she is on the ballot in a contested race and wants to avoid any hint of impropriety.

She said state law allows town clerks to perform election functions when they are on the ballot, “but I’ve always held myself to a little bit of a higher standard. I’m a walking campaign sign if I’m at the polls.”


Hardier-Bernier first ran for town clerk six years ago, and stepped away from her role as an election worker that year, she said.

She took a temporary leave as town clerk when she ran for reelection unopposed three years ago, she said.

This election, Diane Sawin is running against Hardier-Bernier for the post.

Marshfield Town Clerk Narice Casper will step in as the temporary town clerk for the election, and Northborough Clerk Andrew Dowd will assist. Hardier-Bernier said she asked Dowd to help because he has experience with new voting tabulators that Hanover is using for the first time.

In addition, Hanover Assistant Town Clerk Meg Pallotta will be out of the office that day attending her son’s college graduation. So Plympton Assistant Town Clerk Tricia Detterman will step in to help during the election.

Johanna Seltz can be reached at