It’s interesting when things wind to a close, you can’t help but think back on how it all began. This has not been simply a campaign, but instead, a beautiful opportunity to renew everything that has made my time in public service so rewarding and special. The twelve weeks of door-to-door work was far less about introducing myself to my ward, but more about reacquainting myself with old friends and often picking-up on conversations that we began four years ago. Sure, we’ve been able to address issues
by asking “how can I help you” – but in my conversations with you, the residents of Ward 6, it is me who has benefited the most. I thank you for your hospitality and your kindness.
Ward 6 is a remarkable section of the city. It’s the city’s most diverse ward, socioeconomically, ethnically and otherwise – and yet – amid it all there is an optimism that runs consistently from our downtown, West Side Neighborhood, to our residents on Onota Lake and past Berkshire Community College – and everywhere in-between. Ward 6 is a home of great, large families. Some have been here for generation after generation, like the Hamiltons with family throughout the West Side, the Loehrs and Salatinos, and of course, the Tierneys whose imprint is undeniable in Ward 6 and throughout Pittsfield. There are so many more.
My family is here. Raising Arden just a stone’s throw from the beautiful playground at Crosby Elementary School is a true blessing. Living in a neighborhood with other toddlers as playmates makes it even better.
Yes, we have our challenges. But, I believe that we can only meet those challenges by having a vision and working together with your colleagues and our residents. It’s been a formula that has worked for me time and time again. Often I have found that I am most effective as a councilor when I have my constituents backing me up. And, isn’t that how it should be in a democracy? Whether it was working to get a road reconstructed, improving the health and safety in our ward and city, or in enhancing the quality of life through work to improve our schools or making Pittsfield more business-friendly – you can’t do it alone.
Building consensus and working well with others to find better solutions is what I have done best. This is what we need more than ever. Too often, government gets a bad name because of players who are more interested in the political games than getting things accomplished. Often, people are turned-off from the political process because some candidates are more interested in attacking their opponents than providing ideas on how we can make things better.
I believe that I have shown the people of Ward 6 in this campaign that I will vigorously set the record straight when it is called for – but without exception – I will stay focused on what is important: A professional, consensus-building and progressive approach to my role as city councilor.
In my time on the council, I have listened to my constituents. Their ideas and strongly-held beliefs are something that I have made my own. I believe in a revitalized West Side Neighborhood through continued partnerships and the realization of the Riverway vision. I believe in creating a new, state-of-the-art high school environment for our children and families – and I have been willing to walk the long, winding road to help get us there. I believe that every child, whether they live in the West Side Neighborhood or on outer West Street, should be as prepared to learn as all their peers when they walk into the classroom on the first day of school. And yes, I believe that we can achieve greater things in this community. You know, it wasn’t long ago when it was more often a great day for the city of Pittsfield than otherwise, and we dared to dream of becoming the greatest small city in the Northeast.
Today, the forecast says that the sun will be shining. Sure, it’ll be cold out there – but it’s November 5th in the Berkshires. I know I’ll be out there to see all of the friends I have made over the years, the memorable moments and little anecdotes that have enriched my own life and that of my family.
This is my home, Ward 6 in the city of Pittsfield. I am your neighbor and I have been there for you. Today, I humbly ask you to again consider me to be your representative on the city council.
Best wishes – and I’ll see you at the polls, and I’ll see you in the neighborhood.