At the May 21 State Senate convention at Westport’s Town Hall, delegates officially endorsed my candidacy and opened the door for me to start a full-fledged election campaign to serve as the 26th District’s State Senator.
The nominating and seconding statements made me momentarily wonder who was this person they were praising, as I listened to the inventory of my career activities become their reason and their motivation for choosing to put my name forward. I will tell you this though, everyone should experience at least once in their life, such an occassion of praise and “well-done”, so that you can personally feel the special energy and adrenalin that I felt.
Susan Cocco, the Democratic Town Chair of Ridgefield made the nominating statement. Westport DTC members Eileen Flug and Jennifer Johnson, along with New Canaan DTC Vice-Chair David Kostek gave seconding statements.
The following statement is my acceptance of this nomination:
Good evening Fellow Democrats,
Thank you Susan Cocco, Eileen Flug, Jennifer Johnson, and David Kostek for placing my name in nomination this evening.
Thank you to the seven Democratic Town Committee Chairs (Jim Ezzes, Susan Cocco, Nick Vitti, Barbara Reynolds, John Kalamarides, Joe Ventricelli and Ginny Appy) who have extended their support and encouragement, as I enter into this election campaign.
Thank you especially to the Town Committee members across the 26th District who have rallied to this campaign with their enthusiasm and help.
And finally, sincere thanks to the delegates here this evening for your endorsement….and the trust that this endorsement represents.
In defining who I am, I want you to know that I am a life-long Democrat whose values and committment to public service came about in the same way as it has for many other deeply political people.
Congresswoman Rosa DeLauro talks about the modeling of her mother, who was the longest-serving member of the New Haven Board of Aldermen.
State Treasurer Denise Nappier talks of her father who work tirelessly to elect the first African-American to serve on the Hartford City Council.
My lifelong embrace of Democratic issues and Democratic candidates comes as part of the legacy from my family as well.
I am grateful to my parents, my brother, and sisters for the standards I hold and the values I believe in.
For the past 40+ years I have found joy in the work and in the challenge of election campaigns each year. Also during these years, I have handled the responsibilities of public service appointments on both State and municipal levels. Through all these efforts, it is the example and the teachings of my family that guide my political life.
I am running so that this year we can re-write the history of the 26th State Senate District.
As many of you know so well, this is a senate seat which has not yet been held by a Democrat.
In my conversations with State Democratic Party Chair Nancy Dinardo, she acknowledges the challenge, but she believes a win is doable this year. In other conversations with State senators in Hartford, they confirm the difficulty, but they also tell me a win in November is doable this year. And in talking with many of the 26th District Democrats, they say they see the light at the end of the tunnel and can’t wait to get there with me.
For me, this state senate campaign will be an opportunity to contrast a Democratic Party philosophy that is inclusive of others and based on the spirit of cooperation.
It will not be a campaign that advances one person’s personal political agenda, one that is out of touch, and without compassion.
Essentially, I am running to represent everyone in this room tonight and every one in the 26th State Senate District. As it should be.
With me, you will know that your voice and your vote count. With me, you will know that I will be actively listening to your concerns, and I will be learning how best to incorporate those concerns into effective legislation.
And finally, as your elected State Senator from the 26th District, I will lead with the passion and the purpose that is the hallmark of our Democratic Party.
Thank you again.