Editor's Note: This article was written by Ivy Kirby, a student at the University of Vermont and a reporter for the Community News Service, a student-powered partnership with local community newspapers.
Lisa Rees is waiting in a drive-thru when she picks up the phone, but she jumped at the chance to explain why she would be a great selectboard member.
Rees currently sits on Milton's Police Advisory Committee and has been a mentor with the Milton Community Youth Coalition for many years. On March 2, she is running for the one-year seat on the selectboard, against incumbent John Fitzgerald, Kumulia "Kase" Long and Darren Adams.
Why are you running for the Milton selectboard?
“I really care deeply about Milton, and I’m an avid volunteer in the community," Rees said. "And I thought that getting involved locally could really help change things for Milton and also to change things globally.”
What past experience makes you the right fit for the job?
Rees worked for the federal government for over 36 years before becoming a leadership coach in 2015. She was the Chief of Financial Operations for U.S. Citizenship and Immigrations Services and worked on the budget for USCIS, which makes her confident that she’s the candidate that Milton needs, she said.
Rees understands the ins and outs of the federal government and wants to ensure that our democracy remains intact.
What projects or issues do you hope the board will take on this year?
If elected she wants to ensure “all Milton voices are heard and that economic and racial status are addressed on the board," she said.
Rees believes Milton has grown in recent years for the better and wants to watch the town grow responsibly. Rees said she believes the tax rate has to be addressed because Milton residents have been paying too many taxes, for too many years.
“I feel that being involved locally can help bring transparency in government,” Rees said. “It can help people understand government and how they can get involved. We also want to make sure as a government we’re making sure people have access to information, to education, to healthcare and it’s really important to me that everybody’s voice is heard.”
Rees added that she wants to be elected because she is an advocate for volunteerism, and wants to bring that to Milton.
CORRECTION: This article was updated at 7:04 p.m. Feb. 25. A previous version of this story incorrectly named Rees' prior work experience. The Independent apologizes for the error.