open letter newport ri

To the Editor:

It’s disheartening to read personal attacks by Kate Leonard and her campaign toward her opponent, Paul Marshall. Despite the attacks, Paul remains positive which is a reflection of his upstanding character and illustrates why he deserves your vote.  Like Paul, let’s take the high road, focus on the needs of our community, listen to his message and reflect on why he is the best option for the City of Newport. After twenty years, the Third Ward and the city will benefit from a turnover in leadership and fresh ideas.

As a graduate of Rogers and a native Newporter, Paul is aware of the melting pot of people  who populate our city. One wonderful by-product of attending Newport Public Schools is gaining a respect for, and friendships with, a diverse mix of people.  As heightened awareness of the systemic racism that exists in our society becomes a focus,  Paul is the right candidate to understand all perspectives. Kate’s comments in Council meetings show that she is out of touch with a very current issue that impacts all Newport residents.

After graduating from Rogers, Paul left Newport to see what the rest of the country had to offer. Living in other places gave Paul the invaluable opportunity to see how other cities go about the business of governing. Eventually homesick, he and his wife returned to Newport. Upon his return, Paul completed a Masters Degree in Public Affairs while starting his own business and bartending to supplement his income. 

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Paul’s desire to make our community both inclusive and environmentally sustainable led him to become a member of the City Planning Board where he has kept the needs of our entire community and that healthy understanding and respect for all at the forefront of his decision making. As we work toward building a new high school that will address the needs of all  students, Paul’s value system and background on the planning board make him the ideal candidate to make the best decisions for the future of Newport’s kids. 

Lastly, Paul is a smart, kind, honest person. He is willing to listen to and hear anyone who has a  suggestion or complaint. He will bring a rational, intellectual and calm presence to the council. Because he is invested in our community and has chosen to raise his family here, I trust him to make decisions that are in the best interest of all of us who have chosen to do the same. 

 When you see Paul in the neighborhood, walking the dog and pushing a baby carriage, take the time to talk to him. Keep an open mind and you too may decide  that it’s time for a positive change.  

Mardie Corcoran

Newport