The Soapbox: ‘Why I’m Supporting Will Stewart for Mayor’

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Stand up. Speak up. It’s your turn.

I moved to Manchester in 1997, from Dayton, Ohio, at the invitation of a long-time mentor to work with SNHU’s former School of Community Economic Development. In June I celebrated my 53rd birthday, which means half of my life has been spent living, working, playing, praying, and supporting equitable economies and inclusive communities across the Granite State.

I’m blessed to have professional and volunteer experiences that have allowed me to work across multiple sectors throughout the state from Colebrook, Lancaster, Berlin to Concord, Nashua, Manchester, and everything in between. These experiences have demonstrated to me “what’s required to move communities forward” in response to New Hampshire’s changing demographic profile, changes in our economic realities across our rural and urban landscapes and most recently the unfortunate demise of compromise, humility, and the appreciation of the “greater good” in New Hampshire’s political landscape.

New Hampshire has been one of many states subjected to outside interests pushing an agenda of division over unity. These messages and policies are moving into the mainstream public discourse even as New Hampshire and in particular Manchester’s changing demographics reveal a younger and more diverse talent pool strengthening the state’s economic vitality and overall resiliency.

This is why I’ve chosen to support Will Stewart for Mayor of Manchester.

I believe Will exemplifies the values and professional experiences required to move the Queen City forward that challenges the current “status quo” and our ability to “think outside the box.” I also believe he demonstrates in word and deeds the humility, grace and spirit of compromise and collaboration that will move our city forward and allow every resident of Manchester to feel as if they belong and their contributions to the City’s economic, social, and civic life matter.

I’ve watched and worked with Will as a community organizer with NeighborWorks Southern NH, economic development practitioner with the Greater Manchester and Greater Derry Londonderry Chambers of Commerce, and in his current role as Executive Director of Stay, Work, Play NH. I’ve also watched him advocate and work tirelessly for the residents of Ward 2 on numerous issues of concern on behalf of those he represents regardless of race, ethnicity, identity, or pocketbook size with an eye towards equity opportunities and fairness.

These are tough times in the Queen City, no doubt, and we can no longer look towards the past for solutions to today’s challenges. If we are to move the Queen City forward, we need to be bold in our endeavors and progressive in our thinking. I believe Will has the necessary skills, temperament, humility, and appreciation for Manchester’s diverse communities to make a real difference in everyday people’s lives.

I believe we are “stronger together” and as such I hope you will join me in supporting Will Stewart for Mayor.

Beg to differ? Agree to disagree? Your thoughtful prose on topics of general interest are welcome. Send submissions for consideration to, subject line: The Soapbox.


Anthony S. Poore is a longtime resident of Manchester’s Ward 1.

About this Author

Anthony Poore

Anthony S. Poore is a longtime resident of Manchester's Ward 1.