Bridgton Election: Write-in candidate Doug Oakley

Doug Oakley

Doug Oakley is seeking a three-year term on the Bridgton Planning Board or other town government posts as a write-in candidate.

“I am willing to serve as an alternate,” he added. “My understanding from the Bridgton Town Office is that a write-in candidate’s name may be written in for each opening. If a person ended up having the greatest number of votes for more than one position, they would choose which position to accept.”

Why did you decide to seek office? I have never had political aspirations of any type. My wife and I fulfilled a longtime dream and moved to Bridgton with our new baby to enjoy the amazing small-town community, spirit and environment that drew my family here decades ago. After arriving here earlier this year, a number of significant town issues have become apparent that could affect the quality of life for my family, neighbors, friends and the Bridgton community. I decided to attend town board and other meetings, and reviewed town ordinances and documents in an effort to become educated and aware of what is being done. I have met dozens of residents that share my concerns and I now consider many of these new acquaintances extended neighbors and friends. I decided to become involved to be a voice for all of us who would hope to preserve Bridgton’s character and community spirit. And, closest to home, I seek to preserve the Bridgton I love for my son, who I hope will grow up with as many fond memories, stories and experiences as I have.

I am most interested in working with the Planning Board, but would not rule out assisting as a member of the Board of Selectmen at some point.

What strengths and experiences would you bring to the position? My years of undergraduate studies in Physics, Mathematics and Philosophy, my graduate studies in Physics, Optics and Lasers, and my 20-year research career at MIT Lincoln Laboratory in the field of Material Science, Semiconductor Crystal Growth, and Technology, have all provided a detailed scientific approach to problem solving and a practical, common sense focus on finding solutions to challenging problems. In my career at MIT LL, I held a Government Security Clearance and have received extensive training in Environmental Health & Safety as well as annual Conflict of Interest training. As a science teacher and research scientist, I continually developed my proficiency in communication, writing and people skills. I believe these strengths are broadly applicable to public service.

What do you feel are some of the main issues facing the town? I believe Bridgton is facing a major challenge in maintaining the natural environment, beauty, and community spirit that has drawn residents, summer home owners, and visitors here for generations. I feel that is being threatened by heading in the direction of unfortunate, uninspired, and unimaginative business development that will ultimately lead toward the degradation of quality of life and community that that is the essence of what makes Bridgton special. Specifically, large development proposals, water and sewer capacity issues, and business/economic development all need to be handled very carefully to ensure that our unique but fragile small town New England character is not lost. This can be accomplished with clear vision, consideration, and cooperation to the benefit of everyone in town.

Why do you feel public service is important? Public service is a way to get involved with the community. It provides an opportunity to help preserve and improve the natural beauty and environment, as well as the quality of life and spirit of the community. Public service proves you are invested in your neighbors, friends, businesses, and services in the town. It is a method to voice ideas and ideals you may share with fellow citizens and try to work together to further common goals. In the broadest sense public service is an important way to help preserve and protect the community as well as shape the direction and vision for the future.

Background: I have been enjoying Bridgton and Maine in general since my grandparents purchased our family’s cottage on Highland Lake in the late 1960s. I spent every summer of my childhood in Bridgton, sharing wonderful memories with family and friends in Ingall’s Grove. I graduated from the University of Maine, Orono in 1991 with a degree in Physics then continued my studies in graduate school at the University of Massachusetts, Lowell, earning a master’s degree in Physics with a concentration in Lasers and Optics. I taught Honors Physics at Concord Academy and undergraduate and graduate classes throughout my college career. I joined the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) Lincoln Laboratory as a Research Staff member in 1996 and spent 20 years in cutting edge research in the field of Material Science and Semiconductor Crystal Growth.

I formed my own independent consulting firm in 2016.

I met my wife on Highland Lake through a group of waterskiing friends. She attended the University of New England in Biddeford and earned her degree in Marine Biology. She spent a decade working as a volunteer and Assistant Aquarist at the New England Aquarium in Boston, working with the penguins and specializing in their breeding program.

We were married at the Highland Lake Resort in August 2007. In 2008, we started a small winterized addition on the family cottage at the lake with the hope of relocating to Bridgton permanently and starting a family. My wife’s parents retired and purchased a house in Bridgton four years ago to be near their expected grandchildren. Our son was born this past November, and we moved to Bridgton in February of this year. We are so excited to finally be realizing our dream of living full-time in our house on Highland Lake and continuing to share and create new amazing memories with our family, friends and neighbors in this wonderful community.

Please follow and like us: