Letter to the editor: Esther Thomas is the community-building choice

I was fortunate enough to meet Esther Thomas shortly after she moved to Middlebury, and I am thrilled that she is running for a seat on the Middlebury selectboard. Esther has shown herself to be one of those people who looks for ways to be of service by building community wherever she goes. She is a bright light, an excellent communicator, and a warm-hearted leader.

I met Esther when she started attending our church, where she immediately joined our worship team and showed herself to be a powerful public speaker.

Esther is dedicated to listening to Middlebury residents, and if elected to the selectboard will work to make Middlebury a vibrant, inclusive community for all.

Vermont is the only state in the union that has never sent a woman to Washington, D.C., as a congressperson or senator. While our State House in Montpelier is much better (we are fifth highest in the U.S. for women in state legislature), at the local level our Middlebury selectboard has yet to be balanced in terms of gender. I love to see qualified women like Esther stepping up to leadership roles in the community, because diverse groups of people make better choices. (This is a fun fact I learned from our own state Sen. Ruth Hardy, who works every day to encourage more women, and especially women of color, to run for office.)

Please join me in voting for Esther Thomas for Middlebury selectboard!

Joanna Colwell

East Middlebury

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Addison County Independent