Waldo County House races

Herbig, Gillway returned to Legislature

Jones, Brooks, Pease win seats
By Tanya Mitchell | Nov 07, 2012

Waldo County — In the five races for the House seats representing Waldo County, voters returned two incumbents to Augusta, and welcomed three new-comers to the House.

In the House District 43 race between Erin Herbig, D-Belfast, and Donna Hopkins, R-Belmont, voters favored Herbig by a margin of 3,150 to 1,808. House District 43 includes Belfast, Belmont and Northport.

"Thank you to everyone for your support for the past two years and on Election Day.  I am so proud to represent the people of Belfast, Belmont and Northport. I look forward to continuing my work in Augusta to promote economic growth, job creation and increased economic stability for Maine families," Herbig said. "Please be assured I will continue my fight for those issues which you have told me are important to you and remain available to answer your questions and concerns."

Herbig graduated from Belfast Area High School and earned a scholarship to Boston College, where she graduated with a bachelor of arts and science. She is the outreach coordinator for Maine Farmland Trust, and she is on the board of  the Belfast Area Chamber of Commerce, Waterfall Arts, Our Town Belfast, and the Maine Coast Economic Development Alliance. In her first term in the Legislature, Herbig served on the Labor, Commerce, Research and Economic Development Committee.

Hopkins is also a Belfast Area High School graduate. Her professional background has been in sales and customer service with local businesses, including Moss and Penobscot Frozen Foods. She and her husband of 43 years, Steve, live in Belmont; they have one daughter, Andrea, and four grandchildren.

The race for House District 45 between Ryan Harmon, R-Palermo, and Brian Jones, D-Freedom, had Jones as the narrow winner, with a vote of 2,216 to 2,242. House District 45 includes the towns of Burnham, Freedom, Knox, Montville, Palermo, Thorndike, Troy and Unity. Harmon can request a recount free of charge since the margin of victory is less than 2-percent.

Jones has lived in Freedom for nearly 30 years. During that time he has served as a member of the town Planning Board, the local school committee, the budget committee, and as a volunteer firefighter. Jones is currently a selectman in his hometown. He taught at Mount View High School for 17 years, at Lewiston High School for five years, and served as principal of Stearns High School. Jones graduated from the University of Southern Maine and has a master's degree from the University of Maine. He and his wife of 33 years, Anni, have three grown children.

Harmon was born in Maine and has resided here for more than 30 years. He is a former teacher, youth minister and mutual fund accountant. He has a bachelor of arts in history and political science and a master's in business administration from Rivier College. Harmon lives in Palermo with his wife, Holly, and their son and daughter.

In the House District 42 contest between Joseph Brooks, D-Winterport, and Leo LaChance, R-Winterport, Brooks won, 2,112-2,059.

House District 42 includes Brooks, Jackson, Monroe, Swanville, Waldo and Winterport.

"I want to thank all those who supported me in this election and pledge to stay with my campaign promise that every vote I cast will be done in the best interest of the people of House District 42," said Brooks. "I will not be swayed by the party in power if the issue will not benefit all of us in eastern Waldo County."

Brooks moved to Winterport in the early 1980s and is a retired journalist who worked for nearly 40 years at the Bangor Daily News. He has served on the Winterport Town Council for the past several years, and served a couple of years as its chairman. Brooks also sat on the town's Planning Board and a few other town committees and business organizations, and he also served three terms in the Maine Legislature.

LaChance has lived in Winterport since 1998 and he is a public administrator. He graduated from John Bapst High School in 1958 and earned a bachelor of arts in town and city management from the University of Maine, in 1966. LaChance later attended the University of Pennsylvania, where he obtained his master's of government administration in 1967. He has been married for 48 years to Khristine LaChance, a retired educator, and he has two sons, a daughter and two granddaughters.

Following Tuesday's election, LaChance offered thanks to local residents and his opponent.

"Thank you, citizens, and especially Joseph Brooks. I will continue to do my civic duties. I will seek your help to reorganize our state Legislature and to improve our lives," said LaChance.

In the House District 44 race between Jethro Pease, R-Morrill, and Lloyd Chase, D-Liberty, voters favored Pease, 2, 633 to 2,478. House District 44 includes the towns of Appleton, Hope, Islesboro, Liberty, Lincolnville, Morrill and Searsmont.

Pease and his wife of 45 years, Diana, owned and operated two McDonald's — in Belfast and Bucksport — for 20 years. He is a volunteer firefighter who spent 21 years as chief of the Morrill Fire Department. Pease has a bachelor of science in business administration from Husson College (now Husson University). He was born in Rockland and lived in Lincolnville Center until his high school years. He lived in Tenants Harbor and has resided in Morrill for the past 31 years. Pease his wife have a daughter, two married adult sons and five grandchildren.

Chase is originally from Caribou and has lived with his wife, Pam, in Liberty for the past 11 years. They have two adult children. Chase served in the Navy from 1966-70, including service in Vietnam in 1969. He also served with the Maine Air National Guard for nine years while working a civilian job. Chase then worked for Delta Air Lines, retiring in 2002 after 30 years of service as a team leader and the last seven years as a station manager. He has a bachelor of science degree in business management from Ricker College in Houlton.

For the House District 41 race between James Gillway, R-Searsport and Meredith Ares, D-Searsport, the majority of voters supported Gillway, 2,388 to 2,277, with all towns reporting election results as of 10 a.m. Wednesday, Nov. 7. House District 41 represents voters in Orland, Verona Island, Frankfort, Prospect, Stockton Springs and Searsport.

Gillway and his wife of 25 years, Bobbi-Jo, have lived in Searsport for more than 24 years., where they raised three adult sons. After graduating from the University of Maine in 1985, Gillway worked for the Waldo County Sheriff's Department. Two years later, Gillway started working for the Searsport Police Department, spending the last 15 years as chief. He now serves as the Searsport town manager and in 2010, Gillway was elected to represent House District 41.

Ares resides in Searsport with her father and son, and she moved to the Midcoast region after retiring from her position as assistant to the president of Permacel, a mid-sized manufacturing company. Before that, Ares spent many years working in the insurance industry.

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