Letter: Proud to Support and Vote for Andy Friedmann

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To the Editor:

I’ve lived in Reading for 34 years and like most of you, I believe it’s one of the best towns in which to live and raise a family. We benefit from the strength and quality of our collective sense of “community”, and we look to leaders who best share and can shepherd that strength. I know Andy Friedmann is such a leader, and that’s why I strongly endorse Andy Friedmann for his reelection to the Select Board and urge you to join me in voting for him.

Our town has always sought and benefitted from public-spirited, principled and dedicated leaders to volunteer to serve the residents and businesses of this town. This goes for all the volunteers in our daytime and nighttime government, and perhaps nowhere is it more urgent than for our Select Board members.

Andy has unquestionably demonstrated an abundance of these qualities in the 10 years he has served this town as well as in his professional life. His background is in environmental protection and public health and he has 20 years’ experience working at the state Department of Environmental Protection. Andy has served for 7 years on the Reading Board of Health. As both his career and service to the Town reflect, Andy is committed to public service. In addition to his 7 years on our local Board of Health, he’s served on the Select Board for the last 3 years. He has always conducted the Town’s business in an open and transparent manner, with a commitment to full collaboration with all of the stakeholders in town.

Among Andy’s many accomplishments in service to Reading, he led the effort to have an independent audit of natural gas leaks in town and he led the Select Board’s creation of an onboarding manual that could serve as a model for the other town boards, committees and commissions. He supported the formation of the ad hoc human rights group and has long advocated to increase Reading’s use of renewable energy and sustainable practices. He actively supported the 2018 override effort that provided critical funding for our schools, police and firefighters. And he will continue to work hard to extend the use of the override funds as long as possible.

I’ve volunteered in town government for more than 25 years, serving on town meeting, the Community Planning and Development Commission, the Reading Historical Commission and other ad hoc committees, and I’ve worked with Andy over these years. I am most appreciative of his unflagging support for Reading’s nighttime government volunteers. I know Andy to be an honest, forthcoming, principled person and a dedicated public servant. He has proven himself to be a relentless advocate of open, honest and accountable government. For his dedicated advocacy for and service to the Reading community, I’m proud to support and vote for Andy Friedmann for Select Board and I urge you to vote for him as well.

Jonathan Barnes

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