Dayton wants to serve her community

Published 8:00 am Friday, May 24, 2024

Getting your Trinity Audio player ready...

Mary Dayton just wants to give back to her hometown. Having grown up in Kenbridge, she left for college, attending Virginia Tech before moving back to Lunenburg County after graduation. Then three years ago, she moved back to the Town of Kenbridge, where she’ll be serving as its newest town council member.

Back in April, the town staff announced Dayton had gone through the appointment process, getting installed at the April town council meeting. It’s something she just felt led to do.

“I’ve always been interested in the happenings of the town,” Dayton said. “I saw the email for the appointed position and felt a pull to apply. Not many people are interested in serving for local government, but it seemed like something that would be a good service to the town.”

The young mother, who lives in Kenbridge with her children and state trooper husband, said she feels she can bring a new perspective.

“I’m a young female and that offers a different perspective at times,” Dayton said. “I have a young family, so I can be that voice on council.”

In terms of what she’d like to see the town do, Dayton said it’s tricky, because with a small town, you work with what you have. Oftentimes, there’s just not money in the budget to tackle too many new things at once. One thing she is passionate about is public safety.

“I’m really interested in public safety, in terms of having young children and living in the town,” Dayton said. “Just wanting to feel safe walking around in our town. And they do a good job of that, but making sure there’s always also clean places to go play, clean parks. I also like focusing on the visual aspect, the way the town’s represented, the way things look when they’re finished.”

Along with traffic enforcement, Dayton said providing spaces for families to be able to go is a key for her, one she thinks could help bring other young families to Kenbridge.

“I definitely think having clean areas for kids to play is a big thing and I do think we are working on that,” Dayton said. “We have a nice park. We just put a walking trail in and I think that’s important to young families, to have a place to take your kid on a Saturday for a little while, a place you feel comfortable and it be tidy.”

She also likes promoting small town festivals, which brings back fond memories of her time growing up in Kenbridge. Things like that, Dayton said, can also help the town bring people in.

“I think that’s important to young families too, having things to do as a community,” she added.

But above all, Dayton said she just wants to serve her community, as a new voice in government.