To the editor;

In 1982, Hampford Research, Inc., was founded by my father, a chemist. As president and CEO of this local manufacturing business, I am writing to support the candidacy of Sujata Gadkar-Wilcox, who is running to represent the 134th District in Trumbull.

Importantly, Sujata supports small businesses. Sujata does not believe the state should spend millions luring big corporations to Connecticut. Instead, she will work to support grants for small businesses through the Small Business Express’s revolving loan fund which our firm has benefitted from, as well expanding the Job Creation Loan Fund.

I know first-hand how challenging it is for Connecticut companies to find qualified in-state employees. Sujata’s support of a plan to provide free community college for Connecticut residents makes sense to me, as does her support of efforts to provide students with college loans incentives to remain in the state to meet our workforce needs. We need to keep our young people in state and to fill jobs with qualified individuals.

Sujata knows that our crumbling infrastructure must be repaired and maintained if our small, local businesses are to continue to hire employees from around the region. She does not support tolls as a revenue source, knowing how this would hurt employees like those at my firm. Rather, Sujata looks to alternate funding sources like increased taxes on billionaires and wealthy universities that currently pay no taxes.

As a past chairman of the Bridgeport Regional Business Council, I have been impressed by Sujata’s commitment to business and also to our citizens. Remarkably, she has been endorsed by groups ranging from the Sierra Club to the AFL-CIO to the Working Families Party.

Sujata will serve her constituents by looking out for both our small businesses and Trumbull’s families. Please join me in voting for her by absentee ballot or at the polls November 3.

Kate Hampford Donahue