OSSIPEE — Six people are running for three seats on House District 5. Rep. Lino Avellani (R-Wakefield) and Rep. Bill Nelson (R-Brookfield) seek to defend their seats from Donna Ackerman (D-Wakefield), Knute Ogren (D-Effingham) and Patricia Pustell (D-West Ossipee). Meanwhile, Rep. Ed Comeau (R-Brookfield) declined to seek re-election. Jonathan Smith (R-Ossipee) seeks to fill the vacancy. The election is Nov. 3. — Daymond Steer

Donna V. Ackerman

I am running to be a New Voice in the New Hampshire House District 5. My reasons for running are closely related to the kitchen table issues within my community and surrounding towns. I will support environmental initiatives that not only address the climate crisis but also provide new jobs in transitioning from fossil fuels to a more sustainable and greener economy.

I am passionate about human rights, which include reproductive rights for women, LGBTQ rights and racial justice for people of color. I believe in a comprehensive health-care plan that provides options to choose between a government program or maintain your existing plan. Telehealth and Zoom are byproducts of the existing COVID-19 pandemic which confirms the need for improved broadband to support education and health care.

As we progress through the next few years, we must strive to be competitive in our economy and educational institutions in the face of the budget the COVID crisis has affected. The ability to address issues with the mindset of bipartisanship, my passion for protecting our environment while considering the financial stability of citizens and the drive to focus on basic human rights for all is what I will bring to the N.H. House of Representatives.

I am a retired social studies teacher of 27 years, with a doctorate in educational leadership. My interests revolve around outdoor activities like fishing, kayaking, hiking, gardening, biking and riding my Kawasaki Vulcan motorcycle through the back roads of our beautiful state. I would be honored to receive your vote.

Lino M. Avellani

I am running for my fourth term representing District 5 Carroll County, the towns of Ossipee, Wakefield, Effingham and Brookfield.

For the past six years, I have served on the Labor, Industrial and Rehabilitation Committee. It is a policy committee that deals with most employee and employer issues, workman's compensation and other related employment policy issues.

Being a small business owner in Wakefield and Wolfeboro brings invaluable experience to the table, whether in the Labor committee or serving on the county delegation, where I can advocate for other small business owners, taxpayers, employees and citizens when having spirited policy discussions and passing commonsense budgets at the state and county level. My experienced advocacy puts the voice of you, the taxpayer, at the table.

I find serving in the State House very rewarding. Helping constituents navigate state government is one of the rewards which I was especially able to do firsthand during the pandemic with my knowledge of employment policy and my ability to get things done. The current crisis has also shown how important it is to maintain our N.H. Advantage, and I will work hard to preserve this. Keeping our state income and sales tax free shows how we are respected as a well-managed state.

It has been an honor to serve for the last six years in the State House. I look forward to another term and would continue to bring common sense and experience to the office of state representative for Carroll 5.

Current endorsements (more will follow): NH Liberty Alliance, ReOpen NH, Cornerstone Action, NRA A rating. Current public service experience: Three Term NH State Representative, Clerk Carroll County Delegation, Current Wakefield School Board. Former public service experience: Vice-Chair Carroll County Delegation, Wakefield Selectman, Wakefield Budget Committee and Wakefield School Board.

Bill Nelson

When I first ran to represent the residents of Brookfield, Wakefield, Ossipee and Effingham, I promised to bring common sense to Concord. Unfortunately, common sense is not so common these days but is needed more than ever.

Unlike many who serve in Concord, I am not a politician. I am a husband of 51 years, a father of four, a retired special education teacher, and advocate for the elderly and those with disabilities.

It has been my distinct honor to serve Carroll District 5. I don’t attend political rallies or spend my days getting involved in party politics. The truth is, I think the partisanship of our age is destroying the fabric of our country. While COVID has hampered meeting people in person, I revert to answering calls, responding to emails to learn about their concerns. I am proud to be regarded in Concord as one of the representatives that doesn’t follow the dictates of the parties but rather serves the people and is guided by principles.

I am running to serve one final term and bring my expertise and passion for helping others. We have more than enough politicians, I am running to continue to be a servant of the people.

During my first three terms in the House, I have served when both parties had a majority. There was willingness to compromise. This past term, that all seemed to go out the window. How sad!

Issues: I support the Second Amendment.

I believe in the dignity, value and worth of all human life. I am pro-life from the beginning of life to the end of life and every moment in between.

I have been a union member by choice, most of my working years. I believe forced union membership is wrong.

I oppose a state income tax, sales tax or increasing the business tax.

Police — 99 percent of those in law enforcement do a wonderful job. We should be supporting them and address any problems with additional training etc.

Environment — I believe in commonsense steps, protecting our natural resources, encouraging innovation needed for energy independence while protecting the environment. I serve on the Commission to Study Environmentally-Triggered Chronic Illnesses.

Education — As a retired educator of 39 years, I feel passionately about equipping our young people with the skills needed to succeed. I believe parents, not politicians, know what is best for their children. I believe in school choice. 

The county government has its issues that need to be addressed. Lawsuits, payouts, untimely financial reports and audits have been problems that seem to have dragged on for years. We need these fixed NOW. No more excuses.

In closing, I would like to thank county employees and all medical personal for their dedication in dealing with the COVID pandemic.

Knute Ogren

I work at Calumet in Freedom, live in Effingham Falls, attend Nativity Lutheran in North Conway and chair the Carroll County Dems.

I'm running because the present state reps of District 5 have, time and time again, voted against the interests of people who are having a harder time in life — sometimes due to bad luck, mostly through no fault of their own.

Republican state reps, by and large, are not friends to LGBTQ folks through their votes to allow Conversion Therapy on young people and to limit rights of those who are different. Republican state reps, by and large, are not friends to those who understand that the legalization of cannabis is smart. New Hampshire must join every single one of our neighbors (Maine, Vermont, Massachusetts and Canada) in being strategic regarding cannabis.

Republican state reps, by and large, are not friends to women who feel it is their right to choose what's best for their own bodies. Republican state reps, by and large, are not friends to those who suffer with mental health and addiction because the GOP continues to get in the way of the significant funding needed to help our neighbors who are in pain.

Republican state reps, by and large, are getting in the way of ensuring every worker in this state can be guaranteed a fair wage. Republican state reps, by and large, refuse to work on common sense gun laws (a majority of people in both parties are calling for common sense laws). Republican state reps, by and large, are the very reason our property taxes are so much higher than they once were due to willful ignorance when it comes to how the state funds public education.

State rep candidates who don't believe science and ignore the advice of health professionals ought not be leading New Hampshire. State rep candidates who bring no new ideas to the table and instead simply say no to problem-solving suggestions from Dems are not deserving of your vote.

So, what should the people of District 5 and beyond do? I humbly ask for folks to Vote Blue in November. Dems believe in science (Google it). There are fewer abortions when Dems make policy (Google it). Cannabis is not something to be afraid of and the Dems want to figure out how to use cannabis income (like tobacco and alcohol) for the good of the whole. Paid family leave is not an income tax as the Republicans are trying to scare people into believing. Dems want paid family leave because is makes incredibly good economic sense to businesses large and small.

For fairness — Vote Blue. For our younger workers — Vote Blue. For housing and job concerns — Vote Blue. For schools — Vote Blue. The Republicans of New Hampshire are hurting people of this great state because the Republicans, by and large, are stubborn and stuck. Vote Blue in November. It matters.

Patricia Pustell

I have lived in Ossipee for over 15 years and have come to love my neighborhood, my town and this state. I look forward to representing this area as New Hampshire and our country move into a new era. Between climate change, a world pandemic and great tumult in our political and economic systems in this country, the coming years look to be an interesting and challenging time.

I grew up in Rome, N.Y., in a lower-middle-class, blue-collar family. I went off to college and like many young woman of a half-century ago, fell in love and left school to start a family. As the years passed, I learned that you finish what you start, and I graduated from college the same year that the first child of that first relationship graduated from high school. It was not easy, but I did it!

When my children were grown I worked as a flight attendant. In that position I certainly learned how to work with a wide variety of people and to deal effectively with all sorts of problems. Those problems ranged from bad food to aggressive passengers to assorted emergencies in flight. I was even hospitalized at one point due to injuries suffered while fighting an inflight fire. We had to fight the fire, keep the passengers safe, prepare for a possible post landing evacuation and more. You learn to stay calm and do what needs to be done.

I am now retired and in robust good health. I have the time and the experience to be an effective representative for the people of Carroll County District 5. I ask for your support and your vote.

Jonathan Smith

I am a retired FDNY (NYC) firefighter. My wife of 23 years and I have two children, a son, 19, and a daughter, 17. After high school, I enlisted in the Marine Corps to serve as a C130 mechanic. After a medical discharge, I studied electronics technology at DeVry University and graduated with a 3.72 GPA.

After working as an electronics technician at 3M, I decided to change careers and joined the NYPD as a police officer. After years of exemplary service, my achievements garnered me an appointment to the FDNY as a firefighter. During my career as a FDNY firefighter, I had the honor to participate in the largest rescue operation on American soil after the attack on the World Trade Center on Sept. 11, 2001.

Upon retirement, my wife and I decided to move out of New York to seek small government, individual liberty, and a place that respected private property rights. New Hampshire was easily our best choice as we cherish the freedom and liberty this great state guarantees. It is here that we feel most grateful, and I pledge to continuously fight to defend these freedoms.

For six of the last seven years living in Ossipee, I have served the town as a selectman, planning board member, deputy treasurer, budget committee member and as a trustee with the trust funds.

I believe these experiences make me uniquely qualified to be your representative to the state. I will uphold my oath to the constitution without question. Each piece of legislation presented will be reviewed for constitutionality and its effect on limiting the power of government. I will always balance our shared individual sovereignty and freedom against a centralized, corrupt government and will always support and defend our private property rights. 

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