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I am writing to express my support for Stephanie Smyth’s campaign for Newport City Council.  I did not know Steph prior to her announcement that she would run for one of the Council’s at-large seats.  I attended one of her early Meet and Greet events at the Elks and I was excited to learn that she has both a deep connection to Newport (eight generations!) and great professional experience and skills that will benefit Newport’s City Council. 

Steph has worked as a contract negotiator for NUWC for a number of years, experience that will help her understand the City’s contracts and navigate to get things done at City Hall.  I am also impressed that Steph has obtained two graduate degrees in areas that I believe are important for City government – business administration and industrial and organizational psychology.  Steph has already gotten her feet wet at City Hall by volunteering for the Tree and Open Space Commission as well as the recent Charter Review Commission, and those experiences motivated her to seek a Council seat. 

One of my favorite things about Steph as a candidate is that she is a team player and a logical thinker.  Most candidates do not go into a first term as a City Councilor knowing all of the ins and outs of every issue, and I appreciate that when Steph has been asked about issues with which she is less familiar, she talks about how to bring the right people to the table to get things done.  Steph has her own vision for Newport as well the skills to work with others.  As someone who grew up in Newport and recently returned with my husband to raise our kids here, I believe that Stephanie Smyth’s combination of passion for Newport and resume of relevant experience are a winning combination for Newport City Council and I look forward to voting for her on November 8.

Penelope Hunt, Newport resident

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