Though I have served in many organizations and on several committees, this is my first go at a public office. It has been an interest of mine to serve in a public capacity for many years and as a seat became open for city council, I chose to run. I have always felt that it is important to give something back to the community of which one is a part. I have been happy to be a citizen of the city of Kenai and wish to return something to it as a council member.
My experience as a shop teacher has provided opportunities to be involved in processes that affect many people. This responsibility is one I take seriously. Experiences gained working with the local teachers' association, the Alaska Vocation Industrial Clubs of America-Skills USA and other organizations have given me the experience in the democratic decision-making process used in a governmental body. I know the system and can work within it.
A member of the council must be prepared to make sound decisions. I would not submit that I know all answers at this time. When it comes time to make a decision as a council member, I will seek to learn all the perspectives and options available and when necessary, seek out answers to questions from those more knowledgeable than myself.
I am not afraid to take a stand in a minority view when it is seen as what is best for Kenai.
There are many issues that concern many people even in a small community such as ours. There is not the space available to address them all in a short essay such as this. Obviously, economics is of great concern to all of us. This is the foremost topic addressed by people in my discussions when talking about running for city council. My job as a teacher is one that deals with helping people to get in the work place and make a living. I realize there are many small business people and other individuals in the community with ideas about how to make our economy even more successful.
When discussing the future of Kenai, I find that children are another topic of concern. As a father of four, I often think about their future and what Kenai will offer them and the other youth of our community. I believe it's important that our city be tuned in to what is good for our youth, both now and when they become adults. We will still need them in our future for a solid base both economically and as solid citizens that are able to live in and contribute to this community.
My pledge to the citizens of Kenai is to learn the issues as they arise and to base a vote on what is best for the citizens and the city as a whole. I will be upfront and honest in my dealings as a council member. And while I may not agree, I will listen.
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