Recount likely after Graham wins by 33 votes in House District 109

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NORTH YARMOUTH — Democrat Anne Graham narrowly defeated Republican Gary Foster in state House District 109 on Tuesday, 2,132 to 2,099, according to preliminary results.

With just 33 votes between them, Foster said Wednesday morning that he will seek a recount.

North Yarmouth resident Tyler Frank, an independent, trailed in third place with 365 votes.

District 109 includes parts of North Yarmouth, Pownal and Gray.

Graham claimed a 707-536 win in her North Yarmouth hometown and a 287-214 victory in Pownal. Gray resident Foster won in his town 1,349 to 1,138.

The three candidates sought to replace Rep. Susan Austin, R-Gray, who was barred from seeking re-election due to term limits.

Graham is no stranger to close elections. In two previous bids for the District 109 seat, Graham lost to Austin by 219 votes in 2006 and 197 votes in 2008.

She said Wednesday morning that she was thrilled with the win, noting that “I think that it was the result of really hard work,” and that she had knocked on more than 1,300 doors in her campaign.

“I think that it’s important that we recognize that we have to work in a non-partisan fashion on some very difficult issues,” Graham said.

Foster said he had shared the election results with the Maine Republican Party and that he will request a recount. He said the results were “kind of a disappointment,” but that he did his best in the campaign.

Graham is a pediatric nurse practitioner who works for Portland’s school-based health clinics. She finished a three-year term on the North Yarmouth Board of Selectmen this year and also started the North Yarmouth Economic Development and Sustainability Committee.

She represented North Yarmouth on the school consolidation committee and served as president of Foundation 51, the educational foundation for Cumberland and North Yarmouth schools.

Graham has also been on the Governor’s Advisory Council on Health Systems Development, which writes the state health plan and looks at insurance payment reform, and the board of directors of the Autism Society of Maine.

Foster, who runs a residential remodeling and repair business, served on the Gray Town Council from 2004 to 2007, including two years as chairman. He was later on the Gray Planning Board for one year to fill a vacancy, and he also served on the town’s Ordinance Review Committee. 

Foster is now Gray’s representative to the board of directors of ecomaine.

Frank owns CinderCreative, a website development company, and is launching MaineList.org, a real estate listing website.

Alex Lear can be reached at 373-9060 ext. 113 or alear@theforecaster.net.

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A Maine native and Colby College graduate, Alex has been covering coastal communities since 2001, and currently handles Bath, Topsham, Cumberland, and North Yarmouth. He and his wife, Lauren, live in the Portland area, and Alex recently released his third album of original music.