BP's Tatics in Cape Vincent Ny

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

A Remembrance of Brooks Bragdon (1947-2015)

Brooks loved the Town of Cape Vincent its history and its people. 

October 23, 2012 was one of those nights and moments where Brooks Bragdon shined his brightest. It was the first public meeting after BP filed their Article 10 application for their Cape Vincent Wind Project. Many of you may recall that particular evening where elected and appointed officials from Cape Vincent and Lyme met with Richard Chandler, BP's new project director, to ask him questions about BP's project.

I was sitting next to Brooks that night. As we waited our turn to question Mr. Chandler we had a little banter about our questioning. I asked if he was prepared to do battle and if he was going take Chandler to the mat? He brushed off my question and said, "Clif, I want you to assure me that you won't lose your cool." "I want you to promise me you won't embarrass me, use profanity or otherwise make a fool of yourself." I laughed and told him not to worry.

I finished my little part of the questioning and Brooks began with his interrogation of Mr. Chandler: Do you know our town is primarily an aesthetic community? Are you familiar with our comprehensive plan? He continued to badger Mr. Chandler telling him how important our town’s plan and zoning law was to Cape Vincent. At the same time he was demanding that Chandler look him in the face and giving him a wake-up hello when Chandler seemed puzzled and dazed. He told Chandler he was prepared to work with him if he and BP were willing to accept and work within the bounds of our plans and law. If not he shouted, then we will have an adversarial relation.

My favorite line of Brook's questioning and my favorite line of the night was his complete and utter disregard to his entreaty to me to keep my cool, "Mr. Chandler I'm asking you, to cut the bullshit and tell us if you are going to work within our zoning law or not?"

Brooks was best known for his keen mind, quick wit and eloquence that showed bright most nights as he represented the people of Cape Vincent. But, I also loved the other side of his personality that few had the privilege of seeing - the tenacious brawler who played lineman for Williams College football. That tenacity was properly disguised most of the time, but it was very much a part of what made him special, why he was so effective as a town official and why I liked him as a friend.

Clif Schneider

April 15, 2015

Video of Brooks Bragdon confronting 
BP Project Developer Richard Chandler


Art Pundt said...

Thanks for sharing that memory Clif. I remember it well, and it was classic Brooks.

As I recall, in 2009 Brooks was elected easily to the town board and re-elected. I think that was a testament to the respect he received across the community.

Brooks was such a unique person. I am saddened by his passing and will miss him.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for refreshing my memory on what a brilliant job of questioning Brooks did on BP's true intentions.
How we're going to miss his great skills!

Anonymous said...

Many of us in the Cape could not help notice the care and consideration given to our Brooks from the man from Lyme, Don Metzger. All of us are so very appreciative for Don's help, generosity and compassion. My mama always said we will be judged by the company we keep and the people we chose as friends. Brooks chose well. Thanks Don.

Anonymous said...

How could you hate this guy who was so anti-wind but at the same time said publicly he loved his pro-wind townsfolk and neighbors. What an odd and endearing combination.

Art Pundt said...


Some called Brooks anti wind, maybe others thought he was open minded on the issue.

Maybe both labels are not important, because the bottom line is he was without question very pro Cape Vincent and its people.