Sherman's town hall is undergoing something of a face lift.

Since taking office in January, First Selectman Clay Cope has set about making Mallory Town Hall more inviting for residents, the staff and the volunteers who serve on boards and commissions.

A rotating display of photography by Sherman photographers will regularly be on display in the first selectman's office.

A painting, on loan from Sherman artist Sara Frischer, now hangs in a hallway, surrounded by a colorful seating area.

The first photography display is by Cynthia O'Connor, the former art curator at Sherman Library.

"It was nice to get the vote of confidence for my work," said Mrs. O'Connor, who has shown work at The Silo, in local restaurants and at the Sherman Library. "Photography is my passion. I was always the volunteer to photograph the class plays and class trips when my daughter attended Sherman School."

For Ms. Frischer, it was "an honor" to be asked to display a painting in town hall. Her work also hangs in the media room at Sherman School and at American Pie Company.

"The painting was Clay's pick," Ms. Frischer said. "It's of Brookland Trail in the Naromi Land Trust system. When Andrea (O'Connor) was involved in the remodeling of town hall, several of my paintings were proposed for decor in the architect's schematics for the building."

Mr. Cope wants Mallory Town Hall to be a welcoming place.

He cited "the trend in corporate America" to create a comfortable environment for employees. Studies show that increases creativity and work production, he said.

"I started coming to town hall in 2001, as a member of the library board," Mr. Cope said. "By 2002, I was on the Planning Commission attending meetings here. I feel like it's my home away from home and I want everyone to feel that way."

Improving work conditions throughout town takes top priority, Mr. Cope said.

For the employees of Public Works, he had a fax machine and computer installed at the town garage.

"Before, they had to go home at night to fax orders for parts they needed," said the town's new first selectman. "They also didn't have access to the Internet to order through. In order to provide the best service to our residents, we must provide the best conditions and the tools our employees need."

stuz@newstimes.com; 86-355-7322