Rep. Mary Stuart Gile: It’s been an honor to serve you, Concord

For the Monitor
Published: 9/7/2018 12:04:35 AM

To Concord voters, friends and colleagues: It has been my special privilege to serve as representative to the N.H. Legislature on your behalf since 1997. For a variety of reasons and certainly, with mixed emotions, I’ve decided not to file for re-election for the 2019-2020 legislative term.

A bit of history: I was invited to run 22 years ago. At first, I wasn’t quite sure what my purpose would be if elected. Education and advocacy on behalf of young children and their families, especially working families, had been a professional commitment for over 30 years. Eventually, I was persuaded that serving in the N.H. House would provide more opportunities to expand my efforts and participate in the development of related policies. I agreed to run for one term and was elected.

For the record, the journey over the last two decades has been an incredible learning experience. I’ve served on three committees, chaired two, Children and Family Law and Education, as well as two additional statutory committees, the Task Force on Work and Family and the N.H. Student Career and College Investment Fund. My first success was to establish a voluntary credential for individuals working in child care with the goal of improving the quality of care. This led to a professional development plan and career ladder for those choosing to continue their interest in early childhood development and learning.

I sponsored/cosponsored legislation in health and human services, transportation, criminal justice and education, and was involved in starting the Legislative Children’s Caucus. Beginning in 2000, I sponsored several bills to introduce a system of paid family leave. House Bill 628-FN, the most recent bill was heard in three separate House committees in 2018 and passed three times with bipartisan support by the full House of Representatives, only to fail in the Senate under threat of a gubernatorial veto.

I made many new friends from both sides of the aisle in New Hampshire as well as nationally through my appointments to committees with the National Conference of State Legislatures. I’ve learned to control my temper and to respect the ideals and opinions of those who do not share my progressive and proactive views. I look forward to continued advocacy.

Again, it has been an honor to serve you and I am so very thankful to everyone for all the information and expertise that you have shared with me regarding specific bills and for your support over the years for my legislative endeavors.

In closing, there are four candidates whose names will be on the Sept. 11 ballot running for the two seats available for Merrimack 27 (Concord Wards 1,2,3,4, 6 and 7). Please review their information and remember to vote.

(Rep. Mary Stuart Gile lives in Concord.)

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