Larkins loses Regional School Unit 5 re-election bid in Freeport

  • Mail this page!
  • Delicious
  • 0

FREEPORT — Town Council Chairwoman Melanie Sachs was re-elected Tuesday as councilor at-large, while School Board Chairman Nelson Larkins lost his re-election bid.

Sachs defeated newcomer Doreen Christ 1,227 to 458 to keep the seat she has held for the past three years.

Larkins finished last in a three-way race for two seats on the Regional School Unit 5 Board of Directors.

“I’m very grateful to the folks of Freeport for coming out to vote today,” Sachs said Tuesday night. “I’m honored to be able to serve again in this capacity.”

Sachs, the executive director of Freeport Community Services, has lived in town for eight years. This will be her second term on the Town Council.

Christ said she plans to run again in the future.

“I expected the results to be this way because (Sachs) is more well known,” Christ said. “But I’ll be back.”

Leland Arris was elected as a write-in council candidate in District 4, where Councilor Andy Wellen didn’t seek re-election and there were no candidates on the ballot.

There were 122 write-in votes for the District 4 seat, 50 of which were for Arris. Because he was not an official candidate, Arris will have to formally accept the position at the Nov. 10 Town Council meeting.

Arris, general manager of the town’s sewer district, said he started campaigning for the seat last week. He grew up in Freeport and has previously served on the Sewer District Board of Trustees.

“I’m really honored that my neighbors have chosen me to help lead the town in the next three years,” he said. “It’s hard to win as a write-in so I want to really thank people.”

Jennifer Worthy, who was running a write-in campaign for the council, received 26 votes.

“Obviously it wasn’t the outcome I was looking for, but I’m grateful for the opportunity to have met so many residents and neighbors,” she said.

Arris was also elected to a seat on the Water District Board of Trustees as a write-in.


Newcomer Jeremy Clough and incumbent John Morang won two seats on the Regional School Unit 5 Board of Directors.

Clough received 1,012 votes and Morang received 970. The seats are each for three years.

Incumbent and board Chairman Larkins finished third with 857 votes.

Clough, an information security officer at Gorham Savings Bank, has lived in Freeport for five years. This will be his first time holding public office.

“I’m genuinely honored and humbled that the Freeport voters have chosen me,” he said. “I plan on spending a lot of time listening and getting my arms around different issues.”

Clough added that he wanted to thank Larkins for “his years of dedicated service to the schools and the community.”

Larkins, who has been on the board since the RSU was formed in 2009, also lost a re-election in the 2014 election, but was appointed to the board by the Town Council in December after Peter Murray resigned. The term had one year left, which Larkins gave up to run for a three-year seat.

Newcomer Louise Brogan was elected to complete the year that Larkins gave up, with 1,380 votes.

Morang, Larkins, and Brogan could not be reached for comment.

Sewer district

Sara Randall, Andrew Sachs and Michael Ashby won seats on the Sewer District Board of Trustees in a four-way race.

Randall received 1,068 votes, Sachs received 952 and Ashby received 932. The three seats are for three year-terms.

James Harriman received 741 votes in the race for one of three seats.

Randall, who grew up in Freeport and moved back to town in 2013, is an environmental consultant.

“I’m really excited to be elected to the Sewer District and I’m looking forward to keeping Freeport’s coastal water clean,” she said. “It’s what I’m passionate about.”

Sachs, a disaster consultant who provides assistance to state and local governments, has lived in Freeport for eight years and this will be his first time holding public office.

“I’m looking forward to the challenge,” he said. “I’m looking forward to serving the people of Freeport in this role.”

Ashby, a commercial clam digger, previously served two terms on the Sewer District from 2008-2014, and lost a re-election bid last year. He said he’s happy to be elected again.

“I didn’t do a whole lot of campaigning, but that’s good, I’m glad,” he said. “I’d been wanting to get back on (the board).”

Harriman remained positive despite the loss, but said he’s not sure what went wrong.

“Maybe I didn’t put enough time into it or something, or maybe I wasn’t as well known,” he said. “I’m not sure what happened.”

For a one-year seat on the board, Clinton Goodenow defeated Wilson Woodbury, 780-474. Woodbury declined to comment.

Goodenow, a fisherman and clam digger, has lived in Freeport for 45 years, and is finishing a three-year term on the Sewer District board. He said he’s looking forward to serving one more year.

“I’m happy to be re-elected and I hope to serve out this next year and continue the good work the board has been doing,” he said. 

Leland Arris was elected to the Water District Board of Trustees as a write-in candidate with 11 votes. With no official candidates for the seat there were 101 write-in votes.

Arris said he will accept the position, despite being unsure what the board is or the role does in town.

“I’m kind of bewildered a little bit,” he said. “I’ll have to look into that.”

Voter turnout was 1,882, or 29 percent of registered voters.

Kate Gardner can be reached at 781-3661 ext. 125 or Follow her on Twitter: @katevgardner.

Melanie Sachs





Andrew Sachs



I'm a reporter for The Forecaster covering Freeport, Yarmouth, Chebeague Island, and Cape Elizabeth. I'm from a small town in NH no one's ever heard of. When not reporting, I can be found eating pasta and reading books, often at the same time.