The three candidates vying to serve the next three years on Monmouth’s Board of Selectmen believe the town’s geography and people are its greatest assets, but that the town could do more to build upon those strengths.

Lisa Hicks, Dianna Boisvert and incumbent Douglas Ludewig are seeking to fill two posts on the board. Selectmen serve three-year terms.

Chairwoman Pauline McDougald is not seeking re-election.

Voting is scheduled to take place from 8 a.m.-8 p.m. Tuesday at Cumston Hall.

The three candidates have diverse political and professional backgrounds they hope will be an asset to the community.

Ludewig, 74, has served on the board of selectmen since 2001. He has served, or continues to serve, on a variety of local committees, including Cumston Trustees, Cobbossee Watershed District Trustee and economic development.

Ludewig holds a bachelor’s degree in English from Monmouth University in New Jersey and a masters in English from the University of Maine.

A school teacher for 44 years, 42 of which he spent in Monmouth, Ludewig said he continues to feel the need to serve his community.

“I enjoy the work and I love the town,” he said. “I feel it’s important to me to try and do all I can, in any way I can. This is just one way I can serve.”

Hicks, 50, has served on the Economic Development Committee for the past four years.

Hicks, who holds a bachelor’s degree in international business management, has been self-employed for 13 years as the owner of Sunrise Business Solutions, a business coaching and management consulting firm. Hicks also is in residential real estate development and is a licensed Realtor with Maine Real Estate Network.

Hicks at one time was associate director of the health and welfare department for the city of Augusta.

Hicks said she hopes to ease property taxes by creating a business-friendly environment in Monmouth.

“I thought it would be something that would be very challenging and interesting, too,” Hicks said.

Boisvert, 50, has worked at Monmouth Middle School for 15 years and is an education technician III. She has served as a union representative for the past seven years during which she has worked on negotiation teams. Boisvert served on the Monmouth Rescue Association for 20 years until it discontinued serving Monmouth last year. Boisvert also serves on a Critical Incident Stress Debriefing team and is a facilitator for grieving children. Boisvert, as part of her work with the American Red Cross, helped established an emergency shelter in Winthrop during the ice storm of 1998.

“I’ve always been interested in helping others,” she said.

Boisvert graduated from Monmouth Academy and has taken classes at St. Joseph’s College and the University of Southern Maine. She earned emergency medical yechnician certification through Central Maine Technical College.

Boisvert said she is running for selectman because she is unhappy that selectmen discontinued the town’s contract with the Monmouth Rescue Association without putting the question to voters.

“I was not happy with how it disbanded,” she said. “I want what’s best for the town. I want all the information to get out there to the town’s people.”

Ludewig, who helped found the service and was displeased with the process, said there are other challenges facing the town as well. Two of the largest, the state’s contribution to education and revenue sharing, are out of the board’s hands.

“All this stuff affects our local property taxes,” he said. “For an awful lot of people it’s a major thing. People just can’t keep up with the increases every year.”

Hicks said the town needs to find other streams of revenue to offset the dwindling state assistance. She said Cumston Hall, the Monmouth Museum, both of which are part of the downtown area that town officials hope to re-invigorate, and the town’s lakes, are an obvious draw.

“I think we’re a fortunate community,” Hicks said. “We have an opportunity to leverage our assets to serve our community.”

Voters last year created a tax increment financing district in the downtown, meaning town officials can redirect revenue from the South Monmouth Road substation upgrades into projects aimed at generating business revenue.

“One of the things it will allow us to do is to provide grants to business owners and to spruce up the appearance of the downtown area,” Hicks said.

Ludewig said the grants will help. He said new owners have plans to reopen a bakery at the former Roadside Café, which closed last year.

“It’s going to help,” Ludewig said.

Boisvert hopes that residents, if given a chance, would decide to resume a town-based rescue service, but there are still opportunities for improvement even if that never happens. She said the rescue service building, which is adjacent to the town office, could be converted into a club for teens and youngsters.

“There’s not a place in Monmouth for kids to hang out,” she said. “That’s always been a bit of an issue.”

But whether deciding on the future of rescue service, how to improve the downtown, or any other issue that comes before the board, Boisvert said she would seek to be fair and to do what’s best for the town.

“I try to look at both sides,” she said. “That’s the union part in me. I’ve had to look at both sides to see where we can meet in the middle.”

Craig Crosby — 621-5642

[email protected]

Twitter: @CraigCrosby4


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