Vermont Business Magazine Governor Phil Scott today announced the appointment of Kelly MacLaury Pajala, of Londonderry, as Representative for the Windham-Bennington-Windsor District, serving the towns of Jamaica, Londonderry, Stratton, Weston and Winhall. Pajala, an Independent, will fill the vacancy left when Rep. Oliver Olsen (I-Londonderry) stepped down this month. Since 2012, she’s served as town clerk for the Town of Londonderry and for the three years prior to that, was the assistant town clerk in Weston. Pajala also owned her own business, Dancing Hands Creations.
“Kelly has demonstrated an impressive commitment to serving her community through her time as town clerk, as well as through volunteer and other civic commitments. She’s shown a willingness to listen and be responsive to her constituents, and has an important understanding of the needs of her community,” said Gov. Scott. “That, coupled with her business experience, will bring a valuable perspective to the State House, and I look forward to working with her.”
Pajala has long-participated in volunteer activities, including as the Town of Londonderry Parks Board Chair, a member of the West River Farmers Market Board, Little School Board, the Weston Planning Commission, and as a part of the Pingree Park Revitalization Project.
“I am so honored to receive this appointment from Governor Scott and for the opportunity to serve the people of the District where I’ve spent most of my life, getting to know the people, challenges and strengths of this region,” said Pajala. “My years of service with the Town have taught me it’s more important to listen than speak, to approach challenges with an open mind and to always be respectful. I look forward to bringing this approach to my new role as I represent the interests of the Windham-Bennington-Windsor District in Montpelier.”
The process for replacing an Independent in the Vermont Legislature is different than that of replacing a Republican or Democratic, as county committees do not make recommendations for appointments to replace an Independent legislator. However, in keeping with tradition, Governor Scott sought to appoint an Independent to the seat vacated by an Independent Representative.