Speechwriting for a State Representative


On Oct. 1, Rep. Tom Murt gave his farewell address. Murt represented his Hatboro district for 13 years and is a Hatboro-Horsham alumnus. At his request, senior Sarah Pettineo wrote a portion of his address.

“In fifth grade, Tom Murt gave me a citizenship award. We’ve seen each other at many events and we’ve been in contact since,” said Sarah. 

When Sarah called Rep. Murt’s office to ask if he’d write a letter of recommendation for a scholarship, he agreed, and then he asked her if she would like to write about mental health for his farewell address.

“[Mental health] is really relevant in our society today. It’s a really important issue to be brought to the representatives of our state so that they can continue to provide care to the people who are struggling even after Representative Murt leaves office,” Sarah said.

Sarah put a lot of work into writing her part of the speech. “I called my friends every day to read what I’d written; they can probably recite it themselves,” Sarah recalled with a laugh. “It’s easy to write a speech for yourself because you know how you talk, but it’s really hard to write for someone else. I had to make sure that I was getting across what I wanted to get across.”

Sarah went to the Capitol Building to hear Rep. Murt’s farewell address live and to meet some other representatives. “I’m really honored to have had this experience. I want to be a speech pathologist, so I’ve worked really hard in the English class. It’s nice, now that I’m a senior, to be recognized and to have a tangible result for my hard work.”