By Lois Puglionesi
HAVERFORD TWP. — Republican Sarah Armstrong announced her candidacy for state representative in the 166th Legislative District on Saturday. The 44-year-old Radnor resident is challenging incumbent Democrat Greg Vitali, state representative since 1992.
Addressing a group of supporters outside the Skatium in Havertown, Armstrong said she was honored to accept her party’s endorsement and thanked local officials in attendance, including Lower Merion Commissioner Scott Zelov and several Haverford commissioners.
Armstrong said she chose the Skatium to announce her candidacy because she practically grew up at the ice rink, where she skated competitively in her youth. Additionally, the Armstrong’s two children were born during the family’s seven-year residency in Havertown, Armstrong said.
Armstrong proceeded to introduce herself as a 40-year resident of Delaware County, a graduate of Archbishop Caroll High School and Villanova University, where she majored in accounting.
A CPA since 1994, Armstrong touted 23 years professional experience, including 11 years as CFO for a global software company, the former WAM Systems. Her lead role in the company’s recent sale “now allows me to work full-time on my campaign,” Armstrong said.
Also a member of the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners, Armstrong said she is “well-known professionally as someone who gets the job done.”
Proudly noting her family’s “long history of service,” Armstrong identified her mother, Ann Osborne, as the first elected female sheriff in Delaware County. Additionally, Osborne has served on Delaware County Court of Common Pleas board of judges since 1997.
Armstrong said her father, John Osborne, served as a U.S. Marine and FBI special agent. He was recently re-elected Radnor Township treasurer.
Segueing into her own career in public service, Armstrong noted that she chaired the Radnor Township Citizens Budget and Finance Advisory Committee,a volunteer, bipartisan group formed in 2010 to “review all areas of our municipal government and make strategic recommendations to our board of commissioners.”
Soon after, Armstrong co-founded a bipartisan citizen advocacy and education group called Radnor Residents for Responsible Government,which remains active. “Our mission was to keep residents informed about important matters of municipal government and issues in our school district,” Armstrong said.
Active in St. Katherine of Siena parish, Armstrong served five years as vice president of the Home and School Board, and was a member of the school’s Middle States Accreditation Steering Committee and the Legacy Fund Endowment Committee.
“I’m not a career politician,” said Armstrong. “I’m approaching this race differently than others. I believe this is a very important job, and I plan to prove to you that I’m the best applicant. I promise to work for you. Representing the interests and concerns of the people of the 166th district and building consensus for our district to get the resources we need is how I plan to spend my time in Harrisburg.”
Armstrong said she “looks forward to getting into the issues of the district,” and is “focused on improving the quality of life and standard of living for all of us.”
Radnor’s Ward 2, in which Armstrong resides, and precincts 1-2 and 3-2 were recently redistricted into the 166th, along with Wards 4 and 8 and Precinct 10-3 in Lower Merion. Haverford Wards 1 and 9 were redistricted into the 163rd.
The new lines go into effect for 2014 elections, and become official on Dec. 1.