Read complete coverage of the Lewiston mayoral race.

Biographical information


Laurent F. Gilbert Sr.

Office sought:

Lewiston mayor


Home street address:

39 Cote St.

Campaign phone number:

207 784-1958

Campaign email address:

Facebook page:


Facebook. com/LarryGilbertMayor

Twitter account:


Occupation or primary source of income:




Bachelor of Science degree in the administration of justice and Associate of Science degree in criminal justice, both with distinction, from the University of Maine at Augusta; graduate of the FBI National Academy; graduate of the New England Law Enforcement Management Training Institute.

I am a graduate of the Maine Criminal Justice Academy. I have attended a multitude of law enforcement seminars, training sessions and conferences as well as for municipal government.


I have been happily married to the former Patricia Rodrigue of Augusta for 43 years. We are the parents of three adult children, Karen Bowe of Portland, Karla McMahon of Westbrook and Laurent Jr. of Lewiston.

We are the proud grandparents of identical twin granddaughters, Kendra and Eva Bowe, who are 1 year old.

Public offices sought or held:


I have served as mayor of Lewiston for five years during the period 2007-2012. I have also served 25 years on the Lewiston Police Department, advancing through the ranks to chief of police — a position I held for five years before being appointed by President Bill Clinton as the United States marshal for the District of Maine where I served for eight years.

In the interim, I served on the staff of Sen. Susan Collins. I then served as the associate director of the Maine Community Policing Institute at the University of Maine at Augusta. I served in the U.S. Army during the period 1965-1967 with one of those two years in the Republic of Vietnam.

Civic organizations:

I serve as vice president of the Franco-American Heritage Center board of directors. I am a member of the Knights of Columbus. I co-chair the Coalition for a Safer Maine. I also serve on the board of directors for the Maine Alliance for Retired Americans. With my wife, we serve as volunteers for the Jubilee Center. I officiate at Bates College track meets. I have served as a member of the Lewiston Downtown Advisory Board, the board of directors of the Sisters of Charity Health System, Holy Cross Parish Council, Holy Cross School Board. I have also served on the board of directors of the Maine Citizens Against Gun Violence and as a member of Mayors Against Illegal Guns.

Ice breakers

What is your favorite movie?


It is the documentary film, “Not In Our Town: Light in the Darkness” produced by my friend Patrice O’Neil of Oakland, Calif.

What is your favorite book?

“The Lost Art of Healing: Practicing Compassion in Medicine,” by Dr. Bernard Lown, Nobel Peace Prize laureate and a 1938 graduate of Lewiston High School.

What is the best political advice you have received?

The advice came from former United States Senate Majority Leader George J. Mitchell when he called me in July 1992 to tell me that he was nominating me to President Bill Clinton to serve as the United States marshal for the District of Maine. He said, “Larry, I ask but one thing of you and that is that you obey the law.” I am proud to say that I have always lived up to his advice and request. Having served as a law enforcement officer, obeying the law has always been my guiding principle.

What Maine political figure do you admire most?


I admire former Sen. George J. Mitchell for his outstanding service to the state of Maine and the United States. Aside from serving as a United States District Judge and U.S. Senate Majority Leader, he successfully negotiated peace in Ireland where warring factions had existed for years. I believe he would have been an outstanding president of the United States.

Local politics

What has Mayor Robert Macdonald done during the past two years that you agree with? What has he done that you disagree with?

These are questions for the voters to decide. I would rather focus on some of my accomplishments as to why voters should elect me again to serve them honorably as I have for five years previously. When I first ran for mayor, I ran on a platform of selling the Androscoggin Bank Colisee, as we were losing a half-million dollars a year.

With the city council that I served with, we sold it to stop the bleeding to the taxpayers. This has resulted in savings of some $2.5 million dollars thus far and we continue to save a half-million a year every year we don’t own it. Also, the Colisee’s property tax bill for this year is $43,179. 96 its storm-water fee is $17,344. 52, which totals $60,524. 48. This is annual revenue that the city didn’t realize when it owned the Androscoggin Bank Colisee.

Back in 2007, over the objections of the then-city administrator, I insisted on holding a public hearing to consider a 30-year contract with Casella Waste Management to take over our solid waste landfill. It was held at the Multi-Purpose Center where some 300 taxpayers objected to the contract deal and it was soundly defeated by a unanimous vote of the City Council.


As a result of my insistence, the citizens were heard loud and clear. During my term of office, we made a change in city administration where we are now fortunate to have the professional expertise and experience of City Administrator Ed Barrett. I remember one City Council meeting ending at 1:45 a.m.

With the system presented by Ed Barrett, workshops are held on issues to come up before the City Council where all questions can be answered and when the public meeting follows, councilors are prepared to vote on the issues.

During my term, I advanced to the City Council the creation of a committee to review the City Charter which hadn’t been reviewed in some 31 years. The council agreed and that has been accomplished with several changes that have taken effect as a result of a vote of the electorate.

With the City Council, we have appointed a new police chief in Chief Michael Bussiere who has been doing an excellent job. We have kept taxes in check, where unfortunately we have had to reduce the city’s workforce by some 20 percent over the past 10 years. Only of late have local property taxes increased because of the shifting of the burden from the state by Gov. LePage’s attempt to eliminate revenue-sharing. When he was mayor of Waterville, he said we should revolt against that and now that he is in office, he has done similar but worse.

The blame for that goes clearly on Gov. LePage. It would have been worse were it not for the efforts of State Reps. Peggy Rotundo and Mike Carey who serve on the Appropriations Committee and the members of our Androscoggin County legislative delegation. During my term of office, I embraced diversity which has, contrary to myths that continue to be perpetuated, helped our local economy.

Where there once was controversy over our refugee/immigrant population, calm existed throughout my entire five-year term. We must learn to live together in harmony for our common good. When we do, we will prosper together. I have been a strong supporter of the city’s educational system from pre-K through Adult Education. I have also worked to support our local post-secondary educational institutions. I have been a strong supporter of the Riverfront Island Master Plan by appointing the committee to select the firm to lead us in developing that plan. I have participated in the development of the plan. I continue to be a strong supporter of consolidation of city services with the city of Auburn that could eventually develop to a merger of the cities. I firmly believe that we need to continue to assist existing businesses and bring in new ones with employment opportunities as well as to broaden our tax base by putting the city’s resources to work. I will continue to stress the positive aspects of our community and advocate for it.


What has the City Council done during the past two years that you agree with? What have they done that you disagree with?

See previous response.

What has the city administrator and the city staff done during the past two years that you agree with? What have they done that you disagree with?

See the response to the one for the mayor.

What has the School Committee done during the past two years that you agree with? What have they done that you disagree with?

See the response to the one for the mayor.


What should be done with Bates Mill No. 5?

Where the city had twice put out requests for proposal for development of Mill No. 5 and having received none, I was supportive of tearing it down to make that major downtown footprint more economically feasible for the benefit of our city.

Then along came the proposal to place a casino to save and refurbish that massive structure. I was fully supportive of that, which would have brought in some $2 million in tax revenue and created some 500 good-paying jobs with benefits locally. In spite of the fact that Lewiston voters supported it, it was defeated statewide.

This then left the question of what to do with Mill No. 5? The group Grow L + A was formed to save the building and has offered a proposal to do so. The have been promised funding to accomplish part of that. Without first being privy to the full viability to accomplish all that needs to be accomplished, I reserve the opportunity to fully have a viable proposal be fully vetted. I have offered to work with the group to try to secure some out-of-state funding by a wealthy individual who invests in such venues. I am still willing to do that.

Any last words?

As we look to the future of our community of Lewiston, strong and proven positive leadership is essential for success for each of us and for our city. I am ready to once again provide that leadership. I respectfully ask for your vote on Election Day.

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