May 14, 2021

Geer campaigns for Raymond Select Board seat

Abigail Geer is a candidate for a seat
on the Raymond Select Board. The 
position is for a three-year term and
will be chosen by voters during a
town election on June 8.
By Ed Pierce

Abigail Geer has declared her intention to run for the vacant seat on the Raymond Select Board and the first-time candidate says she’s ready to roll up her sleeves and work hard on behalf of all of the town’s residents.

Voters will cast ballots on June 8 to fill the three-year select board term and also choose five members for the town’s Budget-Finance Committee, pick a member to serve on the RSU 14 Board of Directors, approve or disapprove the proposed RSU 14 budget, approve or disapprove the proposed schools’ budget and approve or disapprove the town’s  2021-2022 municipal warrant.

Geer, 36, has worked in private school administration and does not have any previous elected experience, but says she has a lifetime of experience working hard for those around her.

“The most pressing issue in this race is whether we want Raymond to be an exciting, thriving, liveable town now and in the future,” Geer said. “What I intend to do about it is listen to people with openness, interest and respect; strengthen our community through events and programming; and make sure our infrastructure supports community connection, day-to-day life, and long-term growth.”

Her background growing up in Maine taught her to always be on the lookout for ways to help the people around her, and to pitch in and do her part, Geer said.

“I’ve done that every chance I get, from dealing with plumbing issues in a short-term rental I managed on a holiday weekend, to creating apps for teachers to make their complex work more manageable,” she said. “I love rolling up my sleeves and getting to work to make the world around me a better place to be.”

She said that she’s lived in a lot of towns and cities, worked in organizations large and small, and seen up close and personal how physical ability, age, and income impact what life is like.

“I want to bring my diverse experience to the table and make sure every person in Raymond knows they have someone on their side listening to them and working with their wellbeing in mind,” Geer said.

For the past year, Geer said that she’s I’ve worked to build an online community of more than 150 people who have conversations about hard topics facing our society today. They meet “in person” over Zoom and discuss books, podcasts, articles, and news to deepen our understanding of key issues.

It’s been a setting where Geer says she’s grown a lot and has seen others grow along with her.

“In my last job I realized that teachers were struggling with data-heavy tasks and having to do work by hand that a computer could do. I researched their needs, figured out what they were trying to do, and then got to work creating a solution using the tools my organization already had access to,” she said. “One of those tools made it possible for teachers to figure out how to group kids into classrooms for the next school year. This used to take three to four weeks, hour after hour, hand-writing notecards and lists, and checking and rechecking typed up lists. That work is now accomplished in a few hours because of the tools I created.”

Geer said in the first six months of her work as a development associate at a community building organization. She brought in $36,000 directly, and developed materials to help secure over $10,000 in additional donations.

“I don’t know my opponents well enough to articulate their positions and how I’m different. All I know is I’m looking toward the future. I want to build a town that families will be drawn to because it’s the most beautiful spot in Maine, and because it's the best place to live in Southern Maine,” Geer said. “It will be a place where it’s possible to have a fun, connected life, where getting involved is easy, exciting, and rewarding. We have the ability to serve our people and provide an incredible experience of town life, without breaking the bank, and that’s what I want to do.”

According to Geer, she’s running for the Raymond Select Board because she loves to be busy and work hard.

“I love learning new things and stretching myself to take on new challenges. I’m starting to look out for the next thing to throw myself into now that it’s starting to be possible to safely expand my horizons,” Geer said. “I learned about this position and realized that I have a unique and valuable perspective to bring to the table, and I realized I would love to do that.” <

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