Anne-Marie Mastraccio is a graduate of Northeastern University and the Forsyth Dental Center. She worked as a Public Health Dental Hygienist for the City of Boston, before moving to Sanford in 1982 and becoming the office manager of her husband’s optometric practice.
She served for 12 years on the Sanford School Committee, and nine years on the Town Council, including two years as Council Chair. She has served as one of Sanford’s State Representatives for the past eight years, and has also been a member of the Core Building Committee for the schools.
At the beginning of this year, Ms. Mastraccio had no plans to run for Mayor. But as the pandemic unfolded, she realized the resulting economic challenges will require a leader who can best advocate for Sanford at the state level. She believes the experience and connections she has gained as a State Representative make her best qualified for the office. She added that she can build coalitions and work with people she doesn’t agree with.
Ms. Mastraccio applauds the actions the City Council has taken to deal with Covid-19. With regard to other challenges facing the city, she cited the lack of affordable housing as one of the biggest. The Mayor and Council should work with the state to make sure money is available for new housing, she said, and should maintain a good relationship with Sanford Housing and Maine State Housing Authorities. Revitalizing the downtown is another priority.
She also wants to enable residents to more easily engage with the City Council by instituting bimonthly open meetings where citizens can speak directly to Councilors. The public comments time set aside at regular Council meetings is not enough, she feels.
To revitalize Sanford’s retail landscape, she would connect with commercial tenants to find out why they are leaving, and with landlords to find out what they are doing to retain existing tenants and attract new ones. She believes more communication with local business owners and promoting the Sanford area as a regional economy would also help. She feels long range economic development is key. “You can’t lose sight of what’s happening in front of you, but you also have to look ten years down the road.”