Who do you think will work the hardest for all of us?
Not just for farmers alone, or townsfolk alone, or businesses alone, or teachers alone, or retirees alone, or workers alone. For all of us, together.
Who will show up every day, at every roll call vote, having done their homework, listened to people on every side of an issue, and considered the impacts of what they are voting for on everyone in our community?
Who can we know, by their record, will throw themselves full-force into this work?
The answer, by their record, is very clear. Ruth Hardy and Chris Bray have shown up for this community year in and year out. They have consistently, unreluctantly and whole-heartedly stepped up to serve us time and again. We know their record: it is one of hard work and dedication.
I also know this because I have seen it first hand. For nine years I served on local school boards with Ruth Hardy. I know from experience what it’s like to sit across the table and see her work ethic, her absolute dedication, at work. Whether or not we were on the same side of an issue, I know I can count on Ruth to work very hard, listen thoughtfully, and to really care what I think. We need more leaders like her!
We may not always have agreed on the policy issues of the day, but with each of them, I know that my concerns, ideas and perspective matter. More importantly, I know they are ready, willing and able to dive in and do the hard work of finding tough answers to complex problems.
I don’t need my representatives to get it “right” every time. I don’t need them to agree with me every time. I need them to show up and work hard, and to be willing to work harder still when we don’t get it “right” the first time.
Vote for Ruth Hardy. Vote for Chris Bray. Because showing up, working hard, being willing to keep working, and caring about all of us is what matters most.”
Jason M. Duquette-Hoffman works at the Center for Community Engagement at Middlebury College and lives in Middlebury. This letter appeared in the Addison Independent on October 29.