Aimee moved to Ridgefield 13 years ago and is proudly raising her family in our town. Her background in business management, education, youth sports and service are demonstrations of her talent and her commitment to building the people and the community of Ridgefield.
Aimee grew up in New York State, the daughter of a Vietnam-era US Army nurse, Lynn Berger, and advertising executive George Berger. She began her career as an Operations Manager for Hard Rock Café International where she worked with the corporate training department to develop and rollout nationally a comprehensive staff development program. Her business unit was selected for its best practices and served as a Management Training hub for the corporation. After five years with Hard Rock International, she served as General Manager for two units of the Banana Republic.
After seven years as an at-home Mom, with encouragement from her family, she enrolled at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. Her dedication and hard work earned her a BA in Developmental Disability Advocacy in 2017. Today, as a Special Educator and ABA Therapist, she credits the inspiration of her children and their pride in her as the driving forces behind her career change. As Aimee often states, “Their support of me forced me to banish the phrase, I can’t, from my vocabulary.”
Aimee’s work to improve education, physical and mental health for children and youth led her to volunteer for 11 years as the director and coach of the Holland League of the Soccer Club of Ridgefield. There she resurrected the program which gives children with special needs the opportunity to play a team sport. It was the shootings at Sandy Hook Elementary School in neighboring Newtown that led Aimee to become a member of the planning committee for the March for Change, as well as an active volunteer with Moms Demand Action. Aimee is a co-founder of the Ridgefield Women’s March, a non-partisan group of over 1,000 local men and women dedicated to governmental accountability, transparency and action on the most important issues of today.
Aimee and her children Gracie and Austin, along with their rescue dogs, Buffy The Vampire Slayer, Jarvis and Potter, are active hikers of Ridgefield’s Pine Mountain Trail and Bennett’s Pond State Park.
I’m Aimee Berger-Girvalo. I am so proud and grateful that you have nominated me to run for State Representative for the 111th District. First, I want to thank First Selectman Rudy Marconi for his nomination and for his outstanding leadership. Rudy is an example of the impact hard work, passion, and smart thinking can have on our town. He truly is a role model for me. I hope that if I am elected in November, that I will serve Ridgefield in Hartford as well as Rudy serves Ridgefield right here at home. Thank you, Rudy, for all that you do for all of us.
Thank you to my dear friend Jessica Mancini for your endorsement. As a small business owner and an employer, you reflect the kind of entrepreneur and creative leader we need more of in CT. It’s hard to imagine being here, at this moment without your partnership.
And a very special thank you to my two children Gracie and Austin, and also to their dad, Jeff. Your encouragement and support are the reasons why I am here today. I know that you will be with me every step of the way. For that, I am a very lucky person.
Ridgefield is my home. It is the place where I have raised my kids, found friends who have become family, and discovered a community that has so much to offer. It’s the town that has afforded me multiple opportunities to work with children and teens, as a special ed paraeducator at Ridgebury Elementary School, a yoga instructor for high school athletes, a community volunteer, and as director and coach for our town soccer league for children with disabilities. And Ridgefield is the place where I have had the chance to meet, partner with, and learn from so many of our local community members and activists as the co-founder of the Ridgefield chapter of the women’s march. I love this town, its people, and its values.
No matter what I’ve done in life I have embraced responsibility. As a professional in corporate restaurants and retail establishments, I was responsible for customers, employees, and shareholders. In schools where I’ve worked or volunteered, my responsibility is to students, parents, and administrators.
Responsibility is inherent to the job of state representative.
Your State Representative has a fiscal responsibility. In 20 years, the economy of our state and town have changed dramatically. Given these economic challenges, we must find new ways to raise revenue, increase jobs, keep young people here, and balance the budget. None of this will be easy, but the solutions will come from honest dialogue, not partisan rhetoric.
Your State Representative has a social responsibility. I think of the students who organized the National School Walkout, many of whom are present tonight. They didn’t take on this mission because they were only concerned for themselves or just Ridgefield High School. They recognized their responsibility to take their movement to the entire country — and what an example they’ve set for the rest of us. I will ensure that the important social issues of today, income equality, a clean environment, protecting a woman’s right to make decisions for her own health care, or protecting our children and communities from gun violence has a strong voice in Hartford.
Your representative has a personal responsibility; the responsibility to show up, listen and be there for all residents. Showing up means making time for you, scheduling regular opportunities to meet and really listening to your answers. Being present. Whether you’re a senior, a homeowner, small business owner, or an employee who works in those small businesses, you deserve a representative who is accessible and engaged.
I’m a firm believer in collaboration. I don’t want to exercise power, I want to utilize strength. Strength is about listening. Utilizing strength is about YOU. As your State Representative, I will be a bridge between your ideas and action. There is no denying that there are difficult choices which need to be made to benefit CT. But collaboration, guided by voters, can lead to solutions for the long term without relying upon short-term fixes.
The most important thing I would do as your representative, the greatest responsibility I would have, would be to actually represent. It means I stand up– I will stand up –for every one of you — not just those who agree with me. It means that you have a voice and advocate. And it means I can’t stop — and I won’t stop. I will represent YOUR ideas, YOUR desires, YOUR values in Hartford.
Ridgefield deserves a State Representative in tune with today, not with the past. You deserve someone who recognizes the social issues and sentiments of today. Someone who will fight for you and our neighbors. And who will not be bound by the politics of the past, or the occupant of the White House.
That is why I am running for State Representative.
In the 24 weeks between now and November, I intend to visit you, personally speak with you and learn everything I can about your perspective. I intend to work hard to earn your trust and your vote. Talk to me. I’m listening. Because, as your State representative – that is my responsibility.
It would be my honor to represent you in Hartford. Thank you for this opportunity. Now let’s go forward together and let’s win.
About the 111th
Connecticut’s 111th House of Representatives District is contained fully within Ridgefield and covers all of Ridgefield south of Canterbury Lane and George Washington Highway (the portion of Ridgefield north of that dividing line falls within the 138th district, which also includes portions of Danbury and New Fairfield).