A 30-year-old Seymour man is the Republican Party’s new nominee in the state House of Representatives’ 105th District, which covers Seymour, Beacon Falls, and parts of west Derby.
Robert Willis will be running against fellow Seymour resident Theresa Conroy, the Democratic incumbent who took the seat in 2012.
Conroy defeated Leonard Greene Jr. narrowly in the 2012 race and the duo were set for a rematch this November before Greene withdrew from the race, citing new work responsibilities.
According to a press release from his campaign, Willis graduated from Albertus Magnus College in New Haven and is vice president of marketing for “a family-owned national brand out of West Haven” in the kitchen and bath industry.
Willis said he decided to run for the 105th District seat after learning of Greene’s withdrawal and speaking with members of Republican town committees in Derby, Seymour, and Beacon Falls, to whom he had already spoken about a possible run.
He said he’s running “because there needs to be major improvements/changes in Hartford.”
Willis castigated Gov. Dannel Malloy and Democrats who old large majorities in both houses of the state legislature for high taxes and a lack of good jobs.
“Where did the jobs go? Where did our money go? To get the answer, you have to look to those responsible for job creation — business owners,” Willis said. “Unfortunately, they seem to be overwhelmingly in agreement that Governor Malloy and the Democrat majority continue to milk them dry and make it difficult (if not impossible) to grow and create jobs.”
He said his business experience will help him as a legislator.
“I speak with many businesses across the country and have seen how hard it is to do business in different states,” Willis said. “I have been shocked at individuals views of Connecticut because it seems like many of us are in a bubble here — just accepting the conditions we have and not questioning them. I think many good people want a change they can believe in, but it is hard when many people are ‘all talk and no action.”
It is routine for candidates for public office to disclose where they are employed.
In emails with the Valley Indy, Willis declined to name the company he works for, “because my statements are mine alone and I do not want anything reflected on the company, which is made up of both parties.”