Scott Cole, an independent from Bethel, has announced his campaign for Oxford County commissioner, District 2.

Cole is no stranger to local government in Maine, having worked as a chief executive in municipal and county governments for 29 years.

Scott Cole

According to a written campaign statement, Cole, 59, grew up in Warwick, New York, and attended Cornell University on a four-year ROTC scholarship. Following graduation with a bachelor’s degree, he served six years in the U.S. Army as a transportation officer, before moving to Maine in 1990 upon leaving the service.

Cole also holds a master’s degree from the University of Maine.

“I thoroughly enjoy dealing with a diverse public and all sorts of people. It has been a privilege to serve communities as a town manager, interacting with town residents, and ensuring their tax dollars are spent in a judicious and accountable manner. I like to make things work properly for the people paying the tab,” Cole said in a statement.

Cole continued, “Taxes are a hard reality of life. And because there are no free lunches, the next best thing is to insist on accountability of public programs and the personnel administering those programs. That has been my approach for 35 years and it will continue to be my approach as a county commissioner. I ask questions until I sufficiently understand things to make informed decisions. And I do not back away from confronting problems, or people, that stand in the way of honestly meeting the public interest.”

Cole is commander of the American Legion Post No. 81 in Bethel and a member of the Fraternal Order of Eagles Aerie No. 1248 in Rumford. He recently earned his commercial driver’s license at Region 9 in Mexico and seeks to drive a school bus for MSAD 44.

“It will be a new position for me and one with enormous responsibility. I embrace the challenge” Cole said.

“I am grateful for all that has been given to me. I like meeting folks and campaigning for office. I hope to be elected in November and improve county operations afterward. So I am running, and I am running to win,” Cole said.

Cole has lived in Bethel since 1999. He is married to Michele Varuolo Cole has two grown children.

He is seeking the seat held by David Duguay of Byron, who is seeking reelection.

District 2 includes Andover, Bethel, Byron, Canton, Dixfield, Gilead, Hanover, Lincoln Plantation, Magalloway Plantation, Mexico, Newry, Peru, Roxbury, Rumford, Upton, Milton Township and 15 other townships in northern Oxford County.

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