Richard A. Bennett (R-Oxford) has announced his candidacy for the Maine Senate in District 19. A former President of the State Senate, Rick Bennett served western Maine in the Legislature from 1996-2004 (Senate) and 1990-1994 (House).
“My mission is to restore Common Sense and Common Ground to Maine politics,” said Mr. Bennett. “We need to have an economy that puts local, small businesses first, not big trans-national corporations. And we need a government that serves the people, not itself.”
“As Senator, I will work to build infrastructure - including highspeed broadband - that will allow rural Maine to flourish not fall behind. I will foster health care solutions that promote healthy living and favor patients, nurses, and doctors over bureaucracy, insurance companies, and Big Pharma. I pledge to deal openly without partisanship on gnawing societal problems like our opioid epidemic,” he continued.
“And we must create a political discourse on a foundation of respect and love for our fellow humans rather than rudeness and hatred.”
In recent years, he has focused on rescuing and building several successful Maine-based businesses that have created dozens of jobs, including:
GWI, the telecom and internet service provider based in Biddeford, employing 50 people and now building miles of fiber direct to homes and businesses in western Maine.
Quoddy Inc., the premier Maine-made footwear maker employing 20 people in Lewiston.
GMI Ratings, an acclaimed investment research firm in Portland.
ValueEdge Advisors, a firm he founded in 2014 to hold big corporations accountable to their stakeholders.
In his earlier service, Mr. Bennett was instrumental in the creation of the University and Community College Center in South Paris (2002) and the Western Maine Veterans Home (1993). In 2000, Mr. Bennett was unanimously elected President of the Senate in a unique power-sharing agreement when the election resulted in a 17-17-1 partisan tie.
He has served on the boards of the Maine Policy Center, Maine Conservation Voters, and Hebron Academy. He is currently Moderator of the First Congregational Church in South Paris.
A Maine native, Mr. Bennett’s Oxford County roots go back over 200 years. He lives in Oxford with his wife Karen, who is a home health therapist in the community. Together they have two adult children.
Mr. Bennett enjoys hiking, canoeing, hunting, and long-distance running.
District 19 includes the Western Maine towns of Bridgton, Brownfield, Denmark, Fryeburg, Harrison, Hiram, Naples, Norway, Otisfield, Oxford, Paris, Porter, and Sebago.