Republican Gubernatorial Candidates
Ken Fredette | House Republican Leader
Rural Maine Roots
Rep. Ken Fredette was born in Houlton, Maine (Aroostook County) and lived in the small Washington County town of Danforth with his parents, Maurice and Loretta, and five siblings. Growing up in rural Maine had it’s share of financial challenges, as the family of seven struggled with the decline of the forest products industry.
Representative Fredette has always kept these humble beginnings in mind during his four terms in office, specifically while successfully advancing tax cuts and welfare-to-work legislation.
From Public School to Higher Education
Representative Fredette graduated valedictorian from East Grand High School, and went on to earn a B.S. in Accounting at the University of Maine at Machias. He then completed a Master’s degree in Public Policy and Management at the University of Southern Maine’s Edmund Muskie School for Public Service, and a Juris Doctor from the University of Maine School of Law. Years later, he completed coursework for a Master’s degree in Public Administration from Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government.
A Proud Military Heritage
As is true for many small town families, the Fredettes have a proud record of military service. His Father, Maurice, served in the United States Air Force, and his brothers served in the Marines and the Army. Representative Fredette has continued to build upon this strong military heritage, and serves as a Lieutenant Colonel and Judge Advocate General (JAG) in the Maine Air National Guard in Bangor’s 101st Air Refueling Wing.
Rise to House Republican Leader
In 2010, Representative Fredette was first elected to the Maine House of Representatives, where he served on the budget-writing Appropriations Committee during the first two years of the LePage Administration.
His commitment to control state spending didn’t go unnoticed by his colleagues, and he was chosen to be the Leader of the House Republican Caucus for the 126th, 127th, and current 128th Maine State Legislatures.
A Record of Reform
Rep. Fredette’s four terms serving the people of House District 100 (Corinna, Dixmont, Etna (part), Newport and Plymouth) will be remembered for paying off Maine’s hospital debt, enacting real welfare reform, funding career training programs, implementing three historic income tax cuts, pension and regulatory reform, and most recently holding the line against new tax increases during the 2017-2019 Biennial State Budget negotiations.
Representative Fredette is no stranger to political campaigns. A lifelong Republican, he worked as a staffer for presidential candidate Bob Dole, Governor Jock McKernan’s reelection campaign, and the Hon. Rick Bennett’s congressional race.
As the House Republican Leader, he has recruited hundreds of republican house candidates from every corner of Maine.
Engaged in the Community
Representative Fredette is a member of the Fraternal Brotherhood of Masons and the Knights of Columbus, and is past President of the Board of Directors of the Sebasticook Valley Federal Credit Union.
Currently an attorney in private practice, he has taught courses at Eastern and Southern Maine Community Colleges. Rep. Fredette also enjoys his time coaching baseball and basketball.
Rep. Fredette at Home
Representative Fredette is the proud father of two children, Morgan and Colby, both graduates of Nokomis High School and currently attending Husson University in Bangor.Rep. Fredette is an avid hunter and a strong supporter of Second Amendment Rights, having earned the endorsement of the National Rifle Association and Sportsman’s Alliance of Maine for previous House races.
Garrett Mason | Maine State Senate Majority Leader
Garrett Mason is a seventh generation Mainer who calls Lisbon and Androscoggin County home. He currently serves as Senate Majority Leader, while also working in his family’s excavation business and leading on conservative causes.
Garrett grew up in a faith-filled Maine home where he learned the values of hard work, self-reliance, and humility. His dad worked as an oil delivery driver, later starting a small business. His mom worked at home, raising a family that pinched pennies sewing much of the childrens’ clothes. These are the values that have made him a lifelong conservative Republican.
Early on, Garrett operated heavy machinery and today, manages the family business’ books with his Dad calling him “tighter than bark to a tree.”
After college, Garrett took a job managing the Lewiston Maineiacs hockey team. Helping manage a complex business opened his eyes to the challenges faced by job creators in Maine. Determined to stop an overbearing government, Garrett ran for Senate to bring energy and change to Augusta.
The establishment and political insiders told Garrett he would never win his first race, but his message of challenging and changing the status quo in Augusta propelled him to victory.
Garrett is the first person in nearly half a century to serve back-to-back terms as Senate Majority Leader. Also holding the position of President Pro-Tempore, Garrett is the youngest person in Maine history to preside over a Senate session.
While in Augusta, Garrett has been a tireless advocate for Maine taxpayers. He knows that Maine needs less onerous regulation and more innovation to meet the challenges of the 21st Century economy. As such, he was the only member of the legislative leadership, Republican or Democrat, to vote against the biennel budget that increased taxes and spending to record levels. He also led on welfare and education reforms substantively changing lives for the better.
Garrett is a Mainer through and through, and loves the outdoors, including hiking, skiing, and camping.
Garrett Mason is the Maine First candidate for governor.
Mary Mayhew | Former Commissioner of the Department of Health & Human Services
Appointed by Governor Paul R. LePage in 2011 to be the Commissioner of the Department of Health and Human Services, Mary Mayhew stepped down in May 2017 to announce her candidacy. No other candidate for Governor has her specific knowledge of the state’s budget, programs, challenges, resources, or legislative process. Mary understands that leaders need to be able to set priorities, establish goals, benchmark performance and make difficult choices because she has undertaken these tasks and successfully accomplished what she has set out to do.
Commissioner of Health and Human Services
Mayhew served more than six years at the helm of the state’s largest agency, overseeing a more than $3.4 billion budget and 3,400 employees. She managed the many of the state’s most vital programs, including MaineCare (Maine’s Medicaid program), Aging and Disability Services, Child Welfare, Adult Protective Services, Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services, Food Stamps (SNAP), Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF), child support enforcement, agency licensure and public health.
Under her leadership, guidance and policy direction, Mary Mayhew spearheaded the LePage Administration’s welfare reform efforts by implementing time limits and work requirements to help people onto a pathway of prosperity and out of poverty and government dependency. Mayhew increased the Department’s focus on fraud prevention, detection and prosecution to protect taxpayer funding of these safety-net programs for vulnerable adults and families in need of assistance.
Having inherited an agency in constant financial crisis, Mayhew led the department in establishing effective program prioritization and financial management practices. Her leadership halted more than a decade of multi-million dollar budget shortfalls and stabilized Medicaid spending to focus on core priorities of serving the needs of people with disabilities, our elderly and our children. This fiscal stability helped Governor LePage create a budget surplus for the state.
As commissioner, Mayhew implemented innovative reforms in Maine’s Medicaid program, moving away from a sole focus on claims processing to demonstrating value and improved health outcomes for the $2.4 billion spent annually on more than 280,000 Mainers. Her agency accomplished this through investments in primary care and innovative care models designed to improve management of chronic diseases, integrate behavioral and physical health and reduce inappropriate use of healthcare services. When she stepped down to announce her run for governor, nearly 40 percent of Maine’s Medicaid population had its care coordinated. This approach has led to many positive outcomes, including an increase in preventative screening, a 10-percent reduction in inappropriate emergency department use, and nearly 17 percent cost avoidance for members whose care is coordinated.
Because of her desire to strengthen and support at-risk families, Mayhew focused on a holistic approach to improve the integration of services across the Department. Mayhew has prioritized the implementation of a nationally recognized evidence-based model to guide improved decision-making and case prioritization within child welfare.
With a keen focus on data analytics and data-informed decision-making, her agency prioritized measurable performance outcomes to assure taxpayer funds are accomplishing meaningful goals for those served by the Department.
Prior to her appointment, Mayhew was the Senior Health Policy Advisor for the Administration.
Private Sector Experience
Before serving in the LePage Administration, Mayhew served for 11 years as vice president of the Maine Hospital Association. She was previously a partner in the public affairs firm of Hawkes & Mayhew, based in Augusta, and also served as a manager of state government relations for Equifax Corporation in Atlanta, Georgia. She was a legislative assistant in Washington, D.C. for Congressman William Alexander.
Mayhew was born in Pittsfield, Maine. Her mother worked as a nurse’s aide, and her father was a foreman at a local manufacturing company. He also was chairman of the school board and a community leader. At 14, her family moved to Arkansas to care for her mother’s aging parents.
At 17, she moved to Washington, D.C. to become a congressional page and finish high school. Her graduation included a Rose Garden reception with President Ronald Reagan. She then enrolled at the University of Arkansas, earning a bachelor’s degree in political science. Her father passed away when she was 19. After working in Washington, D.C. and Atlanta, Georgia, she moved back to Maine in 1990.
Mary lives in China, Maine with her two sons, Cameron and Chance.