Dear Northport Voters,

According to the census our population is 1,520, which seems right to me. I know Northport well, since I’ve been coming here since before I was born. In 1965 my father built a house here for my mother, a Rockland native. Then, she found out she was pregnant — with me! I have an embryonic recollection of nights spent in front of the fireplace, which I passed down to my daughter, Lucy, when I lay there pregnant with her.

Every summer, every long weekend, every chance we could get, the Frenning family would drive the 200-mile distance to the beloved home my father named “Dwelling Place.” That, and his “Exit Only” sign at the end of our driveway, were his sense of humor. He had a great one. He loved swapping stories with Mike Brown at Saturday Cove and appreciating the quiet culture of the community.

Now, because of the pandemic, my family has followed in my parents’ footsteps. We moved here, just as my folks did, full-time. For us the real excitement is Lucy gets to attend 9th grade at Islesboro Central School. Of course, she would have loved K-8 at the Edna Drinkwater, where my Mom volunteered reading to children. We still have a Christmas ornament from one of her classes labeled “Mrs. Friendly,” as they’d call her. I guess Frenning was a little hard to say. Now, as a full-time permanent sub at ICS, I am called “Ms. Ann,” even easier.

When I heard Selectman Zack Hollingshead had vacated his seat, I did not hesitate to throw my hat in the ring. The special election will take place Wednesday, April 14, at the Northport Town Office and will fill out the last three months of his term. I have a stable of transferable skills that include founding a local educational foundation to raise money for the public schools, supporting a successful public library capital campaign, launching a nature camp for children ages 4-12, and serving as a Girl Scout troop leader for eight years.

I also recently signed up for the Northport Broadband Committee. The group elected me chair, and in the past few weeks our group has been making steady progress. I am proud of our collective expertise, as we approach our goal to bring fast, reliable, broadband internet service to the entire community, just like any other utility. Strong internet service will free up students and other professionals, like my husband, James, to work from home. But more importantly it will make access fair and attainable for all.

I have long been, and will continue to be, deeply invested in Northport. I would be honored to serve you as selectman. Please mark your calendars and vote for me on April 14. Thank you for your support.

Ann Frenning Kossuth, Northport