COUNTY BOARD OF REPRESENTATIVES, DISTRICT 12
EDUCATION: Allegheny College; University of Texas at Austin
PROFESSIONAL EXPERIENCE: I began my career as a writer for a newspaper in Texas. After a few years there and as an editor in Tennessee, we moved to Oneonta to raise our family. Once here, taught for ten years at SUNY Oneonta as well as, on occasion, at Hartwick College. I wrote for the Daily Star both as a reporter and as a columnist. My freelance work has appeared in national publications. Currently, I work as a writer and editor in the SUNY Oneonta Alumni Engagement Office.
COMMUNITY INVOLVEMENT: Girls on the Run Coach, UUSO Board of Trustees
FAMILY: Married for 24 years to Scott Segar. We have two kids: Madeline, 15, and Cormac, 12.
PHILOSOPHY OF GOVERNMENT: “We All do Better When We All Do Better” As much as I’d like to claim that quote as my own, those words were said by Senator Paul Wellstone from Minnesota. When I first heard them, I knew that they summed up the purpose of government. Both as a community and individually, we are only as strong as those around us. It’s up to us to figure out how to ensure equal access for all to decent healthcare, quality education, and living wage jobs. That’s not easy, of course. The first step is creating an accessible and accountable county government that transparently represents all of Otsego county’s citizens.
MAJOR ISSUES FACING OTSEGO COUNTY: Otsego county has an embarrassment of riches, from its dairy farms to its higher education. Yet, as a county, we seem to be stagnating. We are too reliant on the same old leadership that talks a good game but isn’t able to get points on the board. If the county board is making great strides in supporting our business community, protecting our health care, and training a 21st century workforce, it is not transparent enough to show us how it is doing that.
MY QUALITIES: The bulk of my job at SUNY Oneonta is producing the alumni magazine, a three-times per year publication that is mailed to more than 60,000 readers. In order to make that happen, I have to have a deep understanding of schedules, deadlines, and budgets, as well as the ability to co-ordinate all of the parts that need to come together to make it happen. A big part of being a professional writer is also being a professional learner, meaning that I have to understand all of an idea, plan, or policy before I can communicate what it is and what it will do. After a couple of decades in this business, I’m pretty good at asking questions until something makes sense.
STATEMENT: My husband and I chose to live in Oneonta nearly 15 years ago and have never once regretted that decision. This has been a wonderful community in which to raise our kids, grow our careers, and, most recently, move other family members. We’re here for the long haul — and I want this county to thrive in ways that benefit us all.