Scarborough councilor hopes to unseat Volk in Maine Senate

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SCARBOROUGH — Town Councilor Jean-Marie Caterina on Monday announced her candidacy for the state Senate in District 30. 

She will run as a Democrat against incumbent Sen. Amy Volk, a Republican who was first elected in 2010. District 30 includes most of Scarborough, all of Gorham and part of Buxton. 

Caterina will also run as a Clean Elections candidate under the Maine Clean Election Act.

“I feel very strongly that there’s too much money in politics. If I’m going to run to represent the people, shouldn’t it be the people who contribute to my campaign?” Caterina said. 

Caterina, a real estate agent, ran for the District 128 seat in the state House of Representatives in 2012. She lost to Republican Rep. Heather Sirocki by 115 votes. 

“From my seat as a town councilor, from my job as a Realtor, as a friend and a neighbor to many folks in these three towns, I hear stories about high property taxes, short-changed public schools, and continuing attacks on health-care options available to women,” Caterina, 60, said in a Jan. 15 press release. 

“It is not right. Augusta politicians have forgotten how life should be in Maine. I am running because I am tired of politicians in Augusta not understanding how their actions negatively impact the rest of us hard-working Mainers in this district.”

Caterina grew up in South Portland and earned a bachelor’s degree in political science from the University of Maine before continuing to Boston College for a Master of Social Work in social welfare administration.  

In addition to real estate, Caterina has worked as a legislative liaison and assistant commissioner for the Maine Department of Labor, a Latin teacher at Waynflete School in Portland, and an affirmative action administrator for Blue Cross Blue Shield of Maine. She has lived in Scarborough since 1988.

Caterina and her husband, Geoff MacLean, also own five local businesses, including Red Brook Honey (MacLean is a beekeeper with 20 hives) and Casco Bay Adventures, a water taxi and tour service in Casco Bay. 

Volk responded to Caterina’s announcement with a written statement.

“My focus right now is the work facing lawmakers in the 2016 legislative session, where I will continue to stand up for the people of Senate District 30,” she said. “Come summer and fall, my family and I look forward to another great campaign season, which I hope to keep focused on the issues that impact our communities.”

Alex Acquisto can be reached at 781-3661 ext. 106 or aacquisto@theforecaster.net. Follow Alex on Twitter: @AcquistoA

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South Portland and Scarborough reporter for The Forecaster. Graduate of Western Kentucky University and the Salt Institute for Documentary Studies. Alex can be reached at 781-3661 ext. 106.