This article originally appeared May 9 in the Brattleboro Reformer.
BRATTLEBORO — Brenda Siegel, executive director and founder of the Southern Vermont Dance Festival and a long-time political activist, recently announced she was throwing her hat in the ring as a Democratic candidate to replace the current governor, Republican Phil Scott.
Siegel said she was inspired to run after conducting research on how well low-income single moms are reflected in the Vermont Legislature and around the country.
“I realized that I am not reflected anywhere in our legislative body and I want to change that. People in my position don’t run for office because they don’t have resources and supports that others have,” said Siegel, a Newfane resident. She believes that Vermont can be a strong leader in the nation on racial, economic and environmental justice, as well as education, while also growing its downtowns, farms and industries.
A formal kick-off event will be announced in the coming weeks.
Siegel joins environmental activist James Ehlers of Winooski, former utility executive Christine Hallquist of Hyde Park, and 13-year-old Ethan Sonneborn of Bristol in seeking the Democratic nomination for governor. Petitions with the signatures of 500 registered Vermont voters are due by May 31 for “major party” candidates, and the Democratic primary is scheduled for Tuesday, Aug. 14.
Siegel believes that the way we look at the economy is deeply flawed.
“We know that wealth does not trickle down and in fact, poverty trickles up, yet we keep making policies that support the top while leaving behind those who struggle and the middle class,” she said. “We need to rethink our outdated beliefs about what makes a thriving economy. We know that poverty creates a drain on our state, so it is in our best interest to make sure we build the economy from the bottom up instead of the top down. We don’t have to choose between supporting business and employees, we can do both.”
Read full story at the Brattleboro Reformer.
(Fair use with written permission from the New England Newspapers Inc.)