Benke: Has skill, commitment to improve town
Westport's future demands teamwork and fresh ideas on the Board of Finance. In order to maintain Westport's premier education and town services, we need smart financial management. My wife and I decided to move to Westport to raise our two young boys because of the strength of the public school system, relatively low taxes and impressive town amenities. I have vested interest to make sure the town has a sound financial footing for decades to come.
To continue to invest in Westport's services, we need individuals on the board of finance who are willing to tackle the unfunded pension liability with a sense of urgency. To keep taxes low, we must also look for ways to consolidate town functions, eliminate wasteful spending and operate more efficiently. I have direct finance experience, having helped Fortune 500 companies address their capital needs. While working on a global brand for Procter & Gamble Co., I managed production and marketing costs while also growing sales. If elected, I plan to leverage both my corporate and Wall Street experience to confront the financial challenges ahead -- whether that means contract negotiations, improving cost centers or identifying additional sources of revenue.
My strong commitment to public service is exemplified by four years at the U.S. Naval Academy and five years as a commissioned officer in the Marine Corps. I served one tour in Iraq in 2003, where I commanded a company of over 100 Marines. I am seeking a position on the Board of Finance because I have the skills and team perspective to serve this great community and make it better. I will work across lines to solve the town's financial challenges while investing in the great education, recreational, and municipal services that make Westport a place we can be proud to call home.