I am running for re-election for treasurer. I have held this position since being elected in April 2010, when Denis Callahan retired. There have been some stressful times and some (mostly) rewarding times. I love this job.
For those of you who don't know me, I would like to introduce myself to you and tell you a little bit about my background. I began my political employment in 1991 as the secretary to the treasurer here in Ayer. At that time, the treasurer was Thomas Callahan (no relation to Denis Callahan). I worked for Tom until his retirement in 1998, when I left and went over to Harvard to become the assistant treasurer/tax collector. I spent 10 and a half years in that position. In 2008 the fiscal cliff began; it had been talked about since July 2008 that there would be big changes coming to the town. I was laid off in 2009.
With Denis' impending retirement, I was urged to run for the position a year before his actual retirement. At first I was not sure I really wanted to run, but after thinking long and hard, I made the decision to take out nomination papers. It was a good decision for me. After spending 18 years in the assistant position, it was time for me to move up to the treasurer's position.
During the past almost three years, I have developed relationships with the business community. I have overcome whatever obstacles and have met deadlines that I have had. I have successfully learned the unemployment program. This was brand new in the last quarter of 2009. Every city and town in Massachusetts had problems with the new program. After many phone calls and attempts, I finally found a person at DUI who would help me through the process. I am eternally grateful to him.
When I first started, I did not anticipate having to change banks for the town's bank accounts. That was met with an uneventful process. One of my goals was to streamline the quarterly reports and W-2 process. That goal has been accomplished.
My family background was that of a normal 1950s family. My mother was from Georgia. My father was from Concord, Mass., the heart of this country's birthplace. They met when my father was in the Army at Fort Gordon.
My mother was a stay-at-home mom until we were all in school and she then took a job at Godin's 5 & 10 in Chelmsford until we moved to Groton, where she worked at Nashoba Hospital and then for a doctor's office in Concord.
My father worked at the former Fort Devens as a civilian employee. When he retired from there, he was the town clerk in Groton for a while until he retired completely.
I am the third of four children. I have two sisters and one brother. Both of my sisters are in the medical field -- one is a nurse and works in educational services at a hospital in New Hampshire and the other one is in the X-ray field. She now works in tele-radiology. Her husband is the manager of the X-ray department. Both work for a hospital in Boston. My brother is now retired from the U.S. Post Office in St. Louis, Mo.
I graduated from Groton High School before it regionalized with Dunstable. Since I got married right out of high school, I did not go to college until later on. I was married for 25 and one half years to the day to the late Edward Gintner. We moved to Ayer in 1975; except for the four years that we lived out in Barre, I have lived here since. We have four children, a daughter and three sons. They have given me 10 grandchildren who are all a delight to me.
My daughter is a nurse and works for a medical office in Leominster. She and her husband and the three Pacheco girls live in Barre. Her oldest will be going to college in Missouri in the fall. Gee, I hope she comes home when she is done!
My oldest son is married and has two children, a girl and a boy. He is in the Army National Guard on Devens. His daughter graduated from Ayer High School last June. She is in college to be ... a nurse! His son is in middle school in Shirley.
My middle son works for a Comcast contract company. He and his wife have three children. The oldest one lives in Pennsylvania. He will graduate high school in June, and will probably be seen on campus at Penn State. The middle one, a daughter, is a freshman at Norwood High School. The youngest, a son, just started kindergarten at Page-Hilltop last September. He has a long time to go before he goes to college.
My youngest son works for the Harvard Public School system. He and his wife have two children, a daughter and a son. They both attend Page-Hilltop school.
So this is who I am and we are. I do hope that you, the voters of Ayer, will consider re-electing me as treasurer on April 30. In anticipation of your vote, I thank you.