Kathleen Stowe Seeks To Bring Moderate Positions To 149th Seat

By Foster Steinbeck

Kathleen Stowe Seeks To Bring Moderate Positions To 149th Seat

House District 149 Democratic candidate Kathleen Stowe never considered challenging the soon-retiring Incumbent Republican Rep. Livvy Floren, saying she has tremendous respect for the 10 term representative. Stowe is now looking to bring her moderate positions to the seat.

“Our district needs strong, capable representation, and I did not want to see that slip with Livvy’s retirement.” Stowe said. “Our voters have not had a choice in representation in many years, and I thought they deserved that option.”

“Most of all, though, I look at the situation our state faces right now and I think we need all the help we can get in Hartford and I would like to help address our issues,” she said.  

Self-identifying as a fiscally conservative Democrat, Stowe is looking to utilize her experiences from Greenwich’s Board of Education and her finance background to help grow the local and state economy and support Greenwich’s public schools.

Stowe will face Republican candidate Kim Fiorello for the seat at the ballot box this November.

“I think people should vote for me because I have an established track record from two decades in the financial industry, with a proven ability to grow businesses even through economic downturns,” Stowe said. “I also believe my leadership role on the Board of Education has shown my ability to work with others on very important and emotional issues, especially during a pandemic.”

 Stowe said she would like to help build the economy by helping businesses and floated the idea of implementing a one-year holiday tax for new businesses. Stowe said Connecticut already has the key ingredients: a highly educated workforce; access to the I-95 corridor and should incentivize businesses leaving New York City to come to Greenwich.

Stowe was raised in a Democratic-leaning household and identifies a moderate politically while advocating for fiscal responsibility.

“That sometimes feels like a lonely position in the hyper-partisan world we seem to inhabit, but I believe it is the right place for me,” Stowe said. “I often felt Livvy voted not based on party, but on her ideals, and I think you will find I am quite balanced on all issues, but identify more closely with the Democratic Party today on social policies from public education to the environment and individual rights.”

Stowe said she would support the community’s public schools by impacting legislation and advocating to the Governor to ensure all state actions support Greenwich’s local school efforts.

First elected to the Board of Education in 2017, Stowe sought to use her financial background to help manage the school’s budget. 

Over the past three years, Stowe led a superintendent search following Jill Gildea’s sudden resignation, and the search selected Dr. Toni Jones to fill the role. In light of the job’s high turnover rate for the past two decades, Stowe said she designed the contract to include a retention bonus.

Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, Stowe and the board passed a hybrid grading system for its schools rather than a pure “pass/fail” option to satisfy the community’s various needs.

Chairing the budget committee, Stowe has used her career background to find efficiencies and meet budget deadlines. Board of Education Chair Peter Bernstein told the Greenwich Sentinel Stowe’s skills have “truly aided” the board as it has had to work with tighter and tighter budgets.

“She has a firm grasp on the need to find efficiencies and make an impact by doing more with less,” Bernstein, a Republican, said. “This is demonstrated regularly by her ability to see both the forest and trees; she can take a large amount of data and distill it to the important points.” 

Balancing Constituencies

Stow graduated from the University of Notre Dame with a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration. She later worked as a banking analyst at Citibank and as International Decision Systems Board Member.

Stowe said her career taught her to balance multiple constituencies to achieve beneficial outcomes for everyone,  a skill which her former boss — SV Investment Partners Founder Nicholas Somers — complimented. 

During her eight-year stint at the company, Somers said Stowe was a highly motivated, highly intelligent jack-of-all-trades who rose through the company ranks quickly.

 “In her role at SVIP, Kathleen was very successful in achieving financial results by driving the strategic and operational objectives of our businesses,” Somers said. “She was also able to balance the various objectives of the businesses’ constituents; managers, employees, lenders and investors in a collaborative and productive manner.”

Stowe started working at the Financial Technology company Jordan & Jordan, saying she is building the company now with her father’s help. “I am passionate about building companies, economies and communities,” Stowe said. “That’s the fun part.”

After living in New York City with her husband, the pair were looking for a place to raise their children and Stowe said she was drawn to Greenwich’s beautiful environment and school system. “What really sold us on the town and the southwest Connecticut area, in general, was the wonderful sense of community we witnessed. We’ve come to appreciate that more and more as we’ve lived here.”

Kathleen asked that we include the full answers to her questions. Unfortunately we are short on space this week so you can find them all on line at https://www.greenwichsentinel.com/2020/09/21/kathleen-stowes-candidate-questionnaire/.

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