I live in Nottingham in the home my grandparents bought around the time I was born.
As a child, I lived in West Nottingham, attended school at what is now the town hall, and spent a lot of time at Demmon’s Store and Lucas Pond. Both of my parents were active in town affairs: my father was Town Moderator for a while, then on the School Committee. My mother was a Library Trustee. As kids, we attended all town meetings - playing outside the old Town Hall until the adults finished their important business.
We moved when I was 11 and it was almost 50 years before I got back!
During that time I worked part time jobs through high school and college, and received a BA in 1975 and a BS in Nursing in 2010.
Most of my career involved public housing, starting in tenant organizing and working at the Boston Housing Authority, as a manager then as Chief of Operations. I also worked at non-profits, for the Massachusetts Housing Finance Agency, and for the City of Boston.
At 52, I changed careers, going back to school to get my BS-RN and worked primarily with elderly patients during this shorter career.
I am a mother and a grandmother and I am now officially retired My third career is looking after wonderful grandchildren and I now look forward to a fourth career as a NH State Representative!
I believe in freedom, equality, justice and an equal chance of prosperity for everyone.
I have cared deeply about this since I was a child, growing up in Nottingham.
Each year, at Christmas, my mother would take us with her to drop off food baskets (that I think were put together by the town) to poor families. We delivered food to families who lived in one-room, tar paper shacks. I knew kids from school who lived in these places. My parents always said we were poor – but we lived in a nice house. I knew that we weren’t poor like that.
People would not choose to live in tar paper shacks if they had a choice.
The comparison to my own life was stark. As a child I didn’t get it – how could this be right?
As I grew up I figured some of it out and made a career of working with poor people and government -- as a teenage volunteer, as a public housing tenant organizer, later as a public housing manager and administrator.
I don't have all the answers but I know that inequality of income, education and opportunity are just wrong.
The United States – and New Hampshire – were built on the idea that everyone should be able to make it - to live a decent life and have the freedoms and responsibilities that come with democracy.
Whether it is a small town putting together food baskets, towns and cities making public education a highest priority, state and federal government law and regulation to protect public safety, a health care system that is affordable and accessible to everyone, protecting the environment, dealing with public health – including the opioid crisis - these are all things we do to take care of each other.
We must ensure that no one faces discrimination based on the color of their skin, where they were born, their sexual orientation, their religion, their age or anything else. And we must insure that our most basic responsibility - voting - is accessible to all eligible citizens.
The federal government, and the New Hampshire state government are not meeting the responsibility to take care of all residents. I am running for State Representative to help, at least in New Hampshire, get our government back on track.
We need to put partisan politics away and talk to each other as one human being to another and get it done.
I want to do my part, within this democracy, to ensure that everyone has freedom, equality, justice and an equal chance of prosperity. That’s my mission.
The article on this page "What I Believe" calls out many of the values that I believe in for our unique New Hampshire community. Personal values are also important - and overlap with our Constitution and with government. Some of these values include:
- Truthfulness (I believe strongly in always telling the truth)
- Integrity (sticking to your basic principles)
- Working to the best of one's ability (we all have different skills and abilities - what matters is that we do our best, and know when we are not)
- Hard work
- Respecting the rights of free speech
- Respecting the rights of others who may not agree with you
- Kindness and treating everyone with dignity