Good evening. First of all, I’d like to thank God Almighty for my incredible life and for putting me here tonight. I do also want to take a moment to thank my family for their unwavering support and for encouraging me every step of the way through my life.
I also want to thank the BRTC and all of you wonderful Republican citizens of Brookfield, who make this town exceptional; especially George Blass, George Walker, Rose DeMarco and Steve O’Reilly. If it weren’t for the BRTC Bulletin, I suppose I wouldn’t be here now. I read the Bulletin back in May and saw the vacancy and thought “I should do that, I can make Brookfield better.”
So, here I am now! I believe participating directly in our Democracy has never been more important and now is the time to welcome Republican Candidates like me to the ballot.
You may be thinking to yourself, who is this woman? Where did she come from? I’d like to share with you a little of my story so as to break the ice. My maiden name, as some of you already know is Buonaiuto, which means “good help” in Italian. I’d say this name befits the First Selectman position and I can assure you, I am just that. I love to help people and I’ve been doing that my whole life.
I came from humble beginnings. Born and raised along the town line of Brookfield and New Milford, I was the daughter of a construction worker who built many of our town’s landmarks, like St. Marguerite Bourgeoys Church and the Gray’s Bridge Clock Tower. He and my mother instilled in me the true meanings of work ethic, courage, loyalty, grit, confidence, compassion and love of country.
It was at St. Joseph School where I began to build my foundations in Brookfield. I was blessed to be a “Charger” and have fond memories of my precious time and relationships I built there and through freshman year at Brookfield High School. I was also fortunate to have played Brookfield sports and was part of the travel softball team that made it to the National Championships in 1991. I remember First Selectman Bonnie Smith awarding us a Certificate of Recognition. That moment to me showed the lasting impression a First Selectman can make on a 12 year old girl.
It is a fact that I enlisted in the Army immediately out of High School and spent the next 25 years in service to our great nation. Some may consider that time away from our Brookfield Community somehow as a weakness, but I submit to you that my time away is, on the contrary, a huge benefit to our party.
Not only did I learn responsibility and leadership, moving up the ranks from Private to Lieutenant Colonel, but I also acquired and honed exceptional skills in strategic planning, personnel management, conflict resolution, long range budget planning, and negotiations, in addition to two masters’ degrees along the way. These are the positive traits and characteristics that come from an investment of an entire life of community service.
A second dividend from my military experience, is that I have had the chance to live in cities and towns that were not Brookfield . . . places that taxed their citizens excessively, leaving the city bogged down in ever-increasing and unaffordable social programs, or locations where infrastructure suffered due to mismanagement. Seeing what “wrong” looked like up close had a profound effect on me and drives me to fight for policies that enable our community growth, not stifle it.
The answer to the question of where to live “post-army” was crystal clear . . . Brookfield, CT. It is where I grew up and where I know the citizens would want a community that thrived in positive governance.
My husband and our family arrived home to Brookfield in January of 2020. Things were moving along swimmingly with all four of our children in Brookfield Public School System – and then Covid reared its ugly head. Like most families, plans were derailed. Suddenly all four of our kids were in the house for home school. I was newly retired from the Army when I was hired as the Director of Operations for the new Amazon logistics center off of exit 8 in Danbury, CT.
During my time at Amazon, I was able to launch the new facility and meet influential people in Danbury’s political circles. I also coordinated for Amazon to partner with the Women’s Center of Greater Danbury, providing that outstanding organization tens of thousands of dollars in aid directly from Amazon’s profits. Despite these profound accomplishments, I sought to influence the community more directly through involvement with the VFW, Sokol and the Republican Party.
So, that is my story in a nutshell!
Fast forward to today . . . I know that this opportunity presented itself at the right time. I have always aspired to be a part of political office in some way so I am both humbled and excited to be here and to have your endorsement to campaign for the position of Brookfield’s First Selectman. I bring new energy and fresh perspectives and will run an awesome campaign to rebuild our Republican base and excite our constituents.
Like I mentioned a few minutes ago, I like to make things better and that is what I intend to do! I also mentioned I am “good help” and you are soon to discover that is true! I want to help make Brookfield better and I know we can do this together. We can rebuild to get Brookfield back to its historical Republican roots and focus on the things we need to in order to curb development, stop raising taxes, support small businesses, educate our children well, and protect our town. As both a candidate and concerned citizen, I want to thank you and I look forward to campaigning, winning and making Brookfield better yet!
Acceptance speech to Brookfield Republican Town Committee as nominee for First Selectman