I am running for North Adams City Council because I love this community and believe we all have something to contribute, as well as a responsibility to use our abilities and our energy to make this great city even greater.
I have worked for years in both my professional role at the Northern Berkshire Community Coalition (nbCC), as well as through my volunteer service, to strengthen our city and help others see our strength and our potential.
As a candidate for City Council, I want to be a liaison between the residents of North Adams and city government. I know that together we can advance a shared vision of a community in which everyone feels safe, takes pride in where we live, and knows how to access the information, resources and services we need to move forward as individuals and as a community.
My commitment to service reflects the examples my parents, Frank (an English teacher at Drury High School for nearly 30 years) and Marcia (a nurse for many years), set for me and for my sisters. They raised us in the West End of the city, and sent us to North Adams public schools. After college, I returned to build my adult life in my hometown. Peers questioned my choice to return to my hometown, but there was no place else I would rather have been.
In 2005, I landed my dream job working with the teenagers at the Coalition and have been with nbCC ever since. I also have been active in community organizations, including Big Brothers Big Sisters, Mill City Productions, and the North Adams Youth Commission. Several years ago, I joined with friends to host the first NAMA Prom, which we established as an annual event to bring people together and demonstrate the rich social life that can and does exist in our rural community.
As a City Council candidate, I want to take everything I’ve learned, my passion for our city and the many relationships I’ve developed and put them all to work to move our city forward. Among my many areas of interest are the following: youth engagement, advocacy and empowerment; community conversation and action regarding substance abuse and its relationship with crime; civic engagement and developing an informed citizenry who know how government processes work and feel comfortable participating in them; and engendering a built environment that supports active living and healthy eating.
There is much that is strong about our community as well as work to be done. I want to help connect people to that work, and to share my love for North Adams through my service as a city councilor. Please feel free to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit me on Facebook at facebook.com/kate.merrigan .council. Thank you.
Editor’s note: All candidates for North Adams City Council are welcome to send in letters to the editor announcing their candidacy. Candidates can email them in the body of an email to email@example.com, no attachments please. Letters may also be delivered or mailed to the Transcript’s offices at 85 Main St., suite 2.