Leigh Cormie searched the voter rolls at the American Legion in Vineyard Haven.

“There I am!” he said as a volunteer thumbed through the pages.

Taking his ballot into the voting booth, he officially exercised his democratic privilege for the first time — in this country at least.

“This is a big thing for me,” he told the volunteers in his vestigial Down Under accent as he affixed an “I voted” sticker to his lapel.

In September Mr. Cormie, originally of Sydney, Australia, became an American citizen at a ceremony in Fenway Park with 5,188 other immigrants in one of the largest naturalization ceremonies of its kind in U.S. history.

“It was wonderful, it really was,” he said in an interview outside the legion hall.

Mr. Cormie’s wife, Bernie, who originally lured Mr. Cormie to the Vineyard some 17 years ago, took their children out of school and up to Boston to attend the emotional citizenship ceremony, which was presided over by Department of Homeland Security secretary Janet Napolitano.

“It was funny because they called the countries up one by one, in alphabetical order,” Mrs. Cormie said, “and when they called Australia, he was the only one standing in the whole stadium. When they called Brazil about a thousand people stood up.”

“If there was another person from Australia, we didn’t see them,” he said.

Soon after leaving Fenway Park, Mr. Cormie, who now holds dual citizenship in the United States and Australia, registered to vote in anticipation of this Tuesday’s election. In his native country voting is compulsory, but in the United States Mr. Cormie was tired of serving as a spectator to democracy.

“Some people jump up and down and say, ‘Oh, I didn’t vote for him.’ Well. You didn’t even vote at all. C’mon,” he said.

“I hear that all the time actually. I said, ‘I cant wait to get this done, because the first thing I’m going to do is register and then get up here to vote.’”

For years Mr. Cormie, a seasoned veteran of the Steamship Authority, has had to live and work in the kind of civic limbo familiar to long-term expatriates.

“They give you that green card which gives you about ten years,” he said. “So you just sort of carry on. Just obey the rules, that’s all you’ve got to do is follow the rules!”

Mr. Cormie came to the United States from Australia by way of the Czech Republic where he worked as a brewer. As he tells it, his eventual citizenship here was a felicitous, if unexpected, turn of fate.

“It’s amazing how life’s got its twists and turns and how things change,” he said, reflecting. “Here I find I’m married, my kids were born on this Island and we’re raising them here, I’m working here, and we’re just kind of settled.”

As he walked back to his car, a newly minted citizen and voter, a friend approached him and laughed, “Welcome to America!”

Mr. Cormie took the ribbing in stride.

“It’s good to be part of it, it really is,” he said. “You have to be.”