2018 AUBURN MUNICIPAL ELECTION CANDIDATE SURVEY


Description

2018 Auburn Municipal Election Candidate Survey

MAYOR

Ron Anders
I am a lifelong resident of Auburn. A majority of my work life was spent in our family business—Anders Bookstore. Currently I am employed with Tailgate Guys. Previous service includes: Auburn Chamber of Commerce Board/Board chairman, Sunday School teacher, deacon, Boys/Girls Club Board chairman, 2005 Dixie Youth World Series host chairman, Child Advocacy Center Board, Tiger Trail of Auburn chairman, Auburn Raptors president, Super 7-local organizer, Auburn 2020-Inter-Governmental chairman, city of Auburn Parks and Recreation Advisory Board, city of Auburn Planning Commission, Youth athletic coach. Wife Becky, son Josh, 22, son Patrick, 20, and daughter Camille, 17.

What has prepared you for a seat on the city council?
My family business has been the most significant experience in this opportunity to serve Auburn as Mayor. Every day included financial decisions, employee instruction, customer service, marketing, planning for the future. Attentive listening and thinking quickly were everyday occurrences and are certainly skills a mayor must have to lead their community.

What is your relationship to the Auburn business community?
Positive. Business provides for the wonderful quality of life that we enjoy in this community. Business owners/operators are to be supported, encouraged, and celebrated. They make Auburn GO!

What are your top three financial priorities while in office?

1. Provide for a first rate, top-tier Public Safety Department. 2. Continue to invest in our public education. 3. Establish a traffic plan and transportation network that best serves Auburn's citizens.

What is the city’s greatest challenge?
Auburn's greatest challenge will be balancing growth with services. Each citizen that arrives in our community has an expectation of safety, classrooms for their children, facilities for activities, and transportation that works. A balanced approach with deliberate decision making is the only manner to evaluate Auburn's future.

On a scale of 1-5, with 1 being STRONGLY OPPOSE and 5 being STRONGLY SUPPORT, please indicate if you Strongly Oppose (SO), Oppose (O), Neither Oppose or Support (NOS), Support (S), or Strongly Support (SS) the statement below. If you do not know (DK), so indicate.
The city council should make a concerted effort to support economic development efforts.

5—Strongly Support

How would you make Auburn more business-friendly?
As a former retailer, maintaining a positive customer service culture is invaluable. City staff will be expected to practice positive customer service daily in their interaction with the business community and all of Auburn's citizens. Expediting decision making, communicating clearly, providing sound reasoning for determinations, listening thoroughly are just some of the practical areas of a positive culture of customer service.

Brittany Cannon Dement
BRIEF BIO:
I am an Auburn native who has studied abroad in Europe and taught English in Vietnam. I earned a Bachelor’s degree in Political Science and a Master’s degree in Public Administration, both from Auburn University. I previously worked for the Alabama Legislature in the Legislative Fiscal Office and currently teach courses in government and ethics at SUSCC. I have also worked with a Hyundai and Kia tier 3 supplier where I was exposed to the Korean business culture. My husband, Russell, and I are adoptive parents to our four-year-old son, Kell.

What has prepared you for a seat on the city council?
While working for the Alabama Legislative Fiscal Office, one of my specific policy areas was county and municipal government. I wrote legislation and analyzed legislation at the request of Senators and Representatives and worked on both the Education Trust Fund and State General Fund budgets.

What is your relationship to the Auburn business community?
I am the daughter of a small business owner who understands the value of hard work, sacrifice, and pride that business owners put into their businesses. I appreciate the diligent work by our city’s Economic Development Department to bring industries to our community, providing jobs and expanding our tax base.

What are your top three financial priorities while in office?
I want to encourage innovation and collaboration, which will increase business opportunities in Auburn. In addition, I would like to see a more competitive and transparent process for companies receiving city contracts.

What is the city’s greatest challenge?
Our city’s greatest challenge is developing a consensus about how to positively approach the growth we are experiencing.

On a scale of 1-5, with 1 being STRONGLY OPPOSE and 5 being STRONGLY SUPPORT, please indicate if you Strongly Oppose (SO), Oppose (O), Neither Oppose or Support (NOS), Support (S), or Strongly Support (SS) the statement below. If you do not know (DK), so indicate.
The city council should make a concerted effort to support economic development efforts.

5—Strongly Support

How would you make Auburn more business-friendly?
We must create a business culture friendly to innovation, which could be done in a number of ways. We should also prioritize ensuring Auburn is perceived as a progressive community, which is an attractive quality that many industries look for when relocating to new areas. Those of us who live here know that we are a friendly and hospitable city but we need to ensure we are recognized nationwide as such (increasing our MEI score with the HRC would be a great start).

David B. Hill
BRIEF BIO:
I first moved to Auburn while a 4th grader and was part of the first elementary class at Cary Woods Elementary. Graduated from Auburn High where band was my major extracurricular. Received BA and MA degrees from AU thereafter and proceeded to grad school at FSU where I earned a Ph.D. in Government. Then did faculty stints at Kansas State, Florida Atlantic, and Texas A&M. In 1988, I became a Texas-based strategic research consultant, serving both public and private sector clients. I married Auburn native Sue Hoerlein. We have two sons and five grandchildren. We returned to Auburn in 2009.

What has prepared you for a seat on the city council?
As a professor, I taught state and local government courses for a decade. While in College Station, I served on the Planning and Zoning Commission and chaired the Parks and Recreation Board. In the past decade, I have been a consultant to county and city governments, and school districts.

What is your relationship to the Auburn business community?
I am a consumer and customer.

What are your top three financial priorities while in office?
Close the $400 annual gap between Auburn ($600) and Opelika ($1000) sales tax collections per capita.
Seeking equity and fairness in the awarding of city tax incentives.
Seek to curb municipal overhead (other than in public safety, police and fire) to get more dollars into community projects for all.

What is the city’s greatest challenge?
Restoring trust and confidence in city governance. City officials have been outflanked by Opelika Mayor Gary Fuller in being business-friendly. The city has been weak in its negotiations with out-of-town developers. City officials and staff have too often been condescending and dismissive when dealing with local residents and business owners.

On a scale of 1-5, with 1 being STRONGLY OPPOSE and 5 being STRONGLY SUPPORT, please indicate if you Strongly Oppose (SO), Oppose (O), Neither Oppose or Support (NOS), Support (S), or Strongly Support (SS) the statement below. If you do not know (DK), so indicate.
The city council should make a concerted effort to support economic development efforts.

5—Strongly support

How would you make Auburn more business-friendly?
As Mayor, I would spend personal time visiting individual business owners/operators to see what they need that the city might provide to encourage growth and profitability. I would also work with city staff that interacts with business owners and operators to encourage servant-leadership attitudes. Staff should make doing business in Auburn easier, not harder. And I would particularly like to see local businesses rise up to meet our market’s most pressing wants and needs, rather than always chasing out-of-town firms first. Growing existing local businesses must be as important as gaining outside investments.

Lindburgh B. Jackson
BRIEF BIO:
Born in Macon County, reared in Auburn, Retired, but still works with family real estate business. Prior to retirement, built low-moderate income homes throughout the county. Also worked as an engineer’s assistant for the City of Auburn for seven years in the early 1970s. “I enjoyed it,” Jackson said. “I learned a lot about how a city should function.”

Jackson also worked as a cartographic specialist in the design bureau for the DOT, Montgomery. Spent hours toward a secondary education certification at Auburn University. He taught at Tuskegee University’s Job Corp Center and Riley College of Education in Tuskegee, Alabama.

What has prepared you for a seat on the city council?
I learned all people are equal. During the 1960’s, education prepared me for my future which lead me into 7-years of helping a small city grow into a great city. God, my career and being surrounded by local and state issues of change, such as what we are experiencing today.

What is your relationship to the Auburn business community?
Family having several business ventures for the last 50 years and having to work with local and State ordinances, and business officials throughout the surrounding cities and counties.

What are your top three financial priorities while in office?
Help City maintain an A-rating credibility throughout the financial markets
Be sure that there is finances set aside for all employee health welfare and safety
Work to be sure budget is inclusive for all citizens’ needs throughout the City and is transparent through town hall meetings prior to its final approval

What is the city’s greatest challenge?
Coming to terms and identifying the differences between downtown merchants and residents, gentrification, inclusion, transparency as well as low cost housing, student housing ordinances, public transportation, parking, upgrading of streets and lightening in Northwest Auburn, diversity throughout the city on issues that citizens are experiencing and employment throughout the city.

On a scale of 1-5, with 1 being STRONGLY OPPOSE and 5 being STRONGLY SUPPORT, please indicate if you Strongly Oppose (SO), Oppose (O), Neither Oppose or Support (NOS), Support (S), or Strongly Support (SS) the statement below. If you do not know (DK), so indicate.
The city council should make a concerted effort to support economic development efforts.

S = Support

How would you make Auburn more business-friendly?
Create a committee that would bring the different ethnic groups together to research and help to resolve some of our inclusion problems in the Asian, Hispanic, African-American and White-American communities throughout Auburn’s lower-moderate to upper level income citizens to include the merchants throughout the City of Auburn.

Ask for input from the University and other businesses and industries to partner with the City. In this effort, reach out to other cities that have grown through such a partnership and have overcome the majority of these issues and submit recommendations to the council so that the people may decide.

Jordan Langdon: No response

Richard Speake
BRIEF BIO:
2 ½ years volunteer firefighter, NFD, Lee County Historical Society, Alabama Water Watch certified tester.

What has prepared you for a seat on the city council?
N/A

What is your relationship to the Auburn business community?
Have been involved in restoration, addition and repairs of existing structures.

What are your top three financial priorities while in office?
Save money. Include more locals in hiring. Bring in sensible mass transit.

What is the city’s greatest challenge?
Not running out of water, wildlife, and clean air.

On a scale of 1-5, with 1 being STRONGLY OPPOSE and 5 being STRONGLY SUPPORT, please indicate if you Strongly Oppose (SO), Oppose (O), Neither Oppose or Support (NOS), Support (S), or Strongly Support (SS) the statement below. If you do not know (DK), so indicate.
The city council should make a concerted effort to support economic development efforts.

4--Support

How would you make Auburn more business-friendly?
Get on the green wave that is everywhere, and there’s plenty existing examples of that worldwide.

WARD 1

Connie Fitch Taylor
BRIEF BIO:
A lifelong resident of Auburn. The mother of threee sons. I received my Bachelor of Business Administration from Faulkner University. Employed at Auburn University for 30 years and now employed at Tuskegee University. I have a 20+ career in Project and Facilities Management, Contract and Building Services. I have previously served on the Auburn Cemetery Board for 2 terms (9 years). I have campaigned for candidate Arthur Dowdell, John Harris, Pebblin Warren and Doug Jones. I am a member of Mount Vernon Baptist Church where I serve as a Trustee and on the Women Ministry Committee.

What has prepared you for a seat on the city council?
My 20+ career in the political arena, project and facilities management, contract and building services, serving on the cemetery advisory Board for 2 terms has prepared me for this journey. To include attending city council, planning and zoning meetings and being a lifelong resident in Auburn.

What is your relationship to the Auburn business community?
I have patronized over 90% of Auburn businesses, being a lifelong resident of Auburn. The growth of downtown Auburn blossom since the explosion of the Kopper Kettle on East Magnolia in 1978. I have no direct relationship with any business owners in downtown Auburn but in other Auburn communities.

What are your top three financial priorities while in office?
My top three financial priorities while serving as the councilperson for Ward 1 are (1) Affordable Housing in the Northwest Auburn Community (2) Road Improvements to include infrastructure and (3) Implementing more Crime Prevention Programs and Trainings

What is the city’s greatest challenge?
The city’s greatest challenge is finding property to house the Sanitation Department that will be feasible for all the citizens in the Auburn District.

On a scale of 1-5, with 1 being STRONGLY OPPOSE and 5 being STRONGLY SUPPORT, please indicate if you Strongly Oppose (SO), Oppose (O), Neither Oppose or Support (NOS), Support (S), or Strongly Support (SS) the statement below. If you do not know (DK), so indicate.
The city council should make a concerted effort to support economic development efforts.

5—Strongly support

How would you make Auburn more business-friendly?
Hiring and training employees to be more customer services oriented. Especially in the fast food industry.
More diverse owned businesses throughout the city including representatives from more than one social, cultural, or economic group and citizens of ethnic or minority groups
Overall, Auburn has done a good job in promoting a business friendly atmosphere to most of its citizens.

Verlinda White
BRIEF BIO:
Age 63, born and raised in Auburn Al (NW Auburn). Educated in Auburn City Schools and a graduate of Auburn University—both undergraduate and graduate degrees. She is honored to work as the Director of Staff Training/ Court Referral Education Program at East Al Mental Health Center since 1982. She is a licensed Social Worker and certified Mental Health First Aid Instructor. She served previously as an elected official on the City Council 2002-2006 and is currently serving, after being appointed 6/2017. She was ordained as an Evangelist in 2007 and serves a mentor in her community.

What has prepared you for a seat on the city council?
Living in Auburn and specifically in NW Auburn has prepared me for the ongoing challenges of our growing City. Learning from others what is working, what has worked, and keeping an open mind to embrace new knowledge that will help Auburn has been my greatest preparation.

What is your relationship to the Auburn business community?
I have become more familiar with the economic concerns of our business community through my work on the council. I would like to develop a greater relationship with our business community to help encourage more small business to open in Auburn.

What are your top three financial priorities while in office?
To be fiscally responsible in the decisions made by the Council.
To promote economic development throughout Auburn, specifically in NW Auburn.
To partner with Auburn University, schools, churches and others who will help increase our employment pool

What is the city’s greatest challenge?
Our greatest challenge has to do with perspective. We tend to see problems differently and solutions to those problems differently. Finding ways to better communicate where we are and where we are going is an ongoing challenge.

On a scale of 1-5, with 1 being STRONGLY OPPOSE and 5 being STRONGLY SUPPORT, please indicate if you Strongly Oppose (SO), Oppose (O), Neither Oppose or Support (NOS), Support (S), or Strongly Support (SS) the statement below. If you do not know (DK), so indicate.
The city council should make a concerted effort to support economic development efforts.

5—Stongly support

How would you make Auburn more business-friendly?
I would continue to support better parking options and encourage more businesses to appeal to the diverse population of our City. I would encourage us to keep working on incentives for more economic development and incentives for consumers to spend in our city.

WARD 2

Anthony Brock: Decline

Phil Chansler
BRIEF BIO:
My entire career has been public service....26 years on active duty in the US Air Force and I still serve as a Professor of Operations Management at the Air University. I have served on the Auburn Planning Commission since 2010 and am currently the Chairman since Sarah Brown’s departure. I have also been active in my church for many years in various capacities. I have lived in Auburn since 1997 when I came to earn a Doctorate in Change Management. I have two daughters, one attended ACS all 13 years and my younger will enter 8th grade in the fall.

What has prepared you for a seat on the city council?
Long time personal interest in the Auburn municipal government, deep interest in the future of Auburn and membership on the Planning Commission has prepared me for a seat on the CC.

What is your relationship to the Auburn business community?
Other than my own personal business dealings in town (shop and buy in Auburn!), my membership on the Planning Commission is the only formal relationship to the Auburn business community.

What are your top three financial priorities while in office?
Public Safety
Auburn Public School System
Economic development

What is the city’s greatest challenge?
Growth is the singular greatest challenge for Auburn. People are going to come to live in Auburn making dealing with growth a dynamic and complex issue for the future. I believe continuing to deal with growth, focused on economic development, education and public safety to be of paramount importance.
On a scale of 1-5, with 1 being STRONGLY OPPOSE and 5 being STRONGLY SUPPORT, please indicate if you Strongly Oppose (SO), Oppose (O), Neither Oppose or Support (NOS), Support (S), or Strongly Support (SS) the statement below. If you do not know (DK), so indicate.
The city council should make a concerted effort to support economic development efforts.
5-Strongly Support

How would you make Auburn more business-friendly?
Frankly, I believe Auburn is business friendly. Therefore, my business focus would be on maintaining that status and work hard to understand how the current state can be improved.

Kelley Griswold
BRIEF BIO:

US Army Colonel, Retired
BS Business Management, AU
MA Business Management, Central Michigan
USA War College (National Security and Strategic Leadership)
Defense Executive Program Manager
Auburn Public Safety Academy, Emergency Response Team Course, Planning Academy
Huntsville Leadership program
Board Member, Association of the US Army
Huntsville Madison County Auburn Club, Osher Lifelong Learning Institute member
Chairman Huntsville Art Festival
Army Outstanding Volunteer Service Medal, Huntsville/Redstone Arsenal
Board of Directors and Housing Corporation, Auburn social fraternity
Experience with Auburn Board of Zoning Adjustment, Planning Commission, Historic Preservation Commission

What has prepared you for a seat on the city council?
A lifetime of public service to my Nation and community
Willingness to represent citizens’ voices
Desire to help citizens participate in determining Auburn’s future
Repeated exposure to city government and recognition of need for change
Active participant in council meetings over the past several years

What is your relationship to the Auburn business community?
I have no formal relationship but am a customer of local businesses and prefer to shop in Auburn
Sales tax revenue is Auburn largest single income stream so it is essential that Auburn has a strong business base, particularly small businesses

What are your top three financial priorities while in office?
The city budget is sales tax-weighted, so promoting all business is critical to our largest income stream. Shoring up the general fund is critical, and investing in businesses that are top tax generators is smart. My priorities are
Public schools
Public safety
Infrastructure to accommodate growth

What is the city’s greatest challenge?
Restoring public trust. Giving power to citizens through elected officials rather than mayor-appointed commissions and city employees, and moving to inclusive and transparent decision processes. The public and decision makers need information with sufficient time to deliberate publicly and determine courses of action.

On a scale of 1-5, with 1 being STRONGLY OPPOSE and 5 being STRONGLY SUPPORT, please indicate if you Strongly Oppose (SO), Oppose (O), Neither Oppose or Support (NOS), Support (S), or Strongly Support (SS) the statement below. If you do not know (DK), so indicate.
The city council should make a concerted effort to support economic development efforts.

5--Strongly Support

How would you make Auburn more business-friendly?
Business owners are the best sources of ideas to make the city more business-friendly. The city should reach out to them on a regularly scheduled basis, listen closely to their input, and present their ideas to citizens. This way there are minimal surprises that could to stop a good idea in its tracks. Coordination with all stakeholders is always good.
As a start and with city direction, the Economic Development Department and Planning Departments can work closely with all levels of business owners and the Chamber of Commerce in a concerted effort to reduce regulatory and / or administrative obstacles.

Stephen “Kyle” Moseley
BRIEF BIO:
My name is Stephen “Kyle” Moseley. I’m originally from Alexander City, AL and have lived in east Alabama my whole life. My wife Lindsey and I have lived in Auburn since 2014. We have a three-year old daughter, Anna Kate. I have been a firefighter for 10 years and currently work with the City of Sylacauga. In July 2016, I started a small business, Distinct Home Inspection, LLC, based in Auburn.

What has prepared you for a seat on the city council?
I bring unique insight as a municipal employee and small business owner, which I hope will facilitate dialogue among local citizens, public municipalities, and the city.
Open communication is my primary goal and critical for a successful city operation, particularly when evaluating and addressing the city’s needs and problems.

What is your relationship to the Auburn business community?
As a small business owner, I’m substantially involved in our real estate and housing market, which is one of the biggest areas of growth and commerce in our community.

What are your top three financial priorities while in office?
1. Ensure ongoing expenditures are supported by stable ongoing revenues.
2. Support long-term planning for continued growth.
3. Provide proper infrastructure for areas of residential and business growth in all areas of Auburn, especially NW Auburn.

What is the city’s greatest challenge?
Monitoring and controlling growth so that the city can adequately plan for, and thus provide the proper infrastructure and emergency services to all citizens.

On a scale of 1-5, with 1 being STRONGLY OPPOSE and 5 being STRONGLY SUPPORT, please indicate if you Strongly Oppose (SO), Oppose (O), Neither Oppose or Support (NOS), Support (S), or Strongly Support (SS) the statement below. If you do not know (DK), so indicate.
The city council should make a concerted effort to support economic development efforts.

5—Strongly support

How would you make Auburn more business-friendly?
If elected, I will do everything in my power to help small local businesses with start-up. It is critical that we, the Council and city, support their endeavors and ensure their success. With that, I would advocate for getting larger businesses to the area as this brings well-paying jobs to our citizens. As mentioned, I hope that by bridging communication channels, I will be able to hear the community’s needs. This will assist in making informed decisions that support the city’s infrastructure.

Todd Scholl
BREIF BIO:
I was born and raised an Iowa farmboy where I gained responsibility and leadership through 4-H. I graduated from The University of Iowa minoring in Political Science which allowed me to work for Iowa Governor Branstad. Then I moved into Hospitality and have lived in seven states including being HOA President in Indianapolis and Little Rock with active roles in community service including Storybook Farm here. Michele is my wife of 18 years with two sons, one a freshman at Auburn University and one at East Samford School.

What has prepared you for a seat on the city council?
My life’s work as a humble innkeeper taking care of people’s basic needs are strong foundations for service which help me navigate problem solving in both short term and long term situations. My work provides the opportunity for strategic planning, budgeting, mentoring and community involvement.

What is your relationship to the Auburn business community?
I serve as a board member for the Chamber and am active on the membership committee. I helped found a new hospitality firm this year that manages AUHCC. Our hotel assists the business community for both new corporate recruitment and existing training and development.

What are your top three financial priorities while in office?
Financially I would like to see the city of Auburn spend allocated dollars here locally whenever possible in order to keep tax revenues home. I also will ensure staying within budget is a key priority and finally will ensure economic development has the tools necessary to recruit and retain commercial interests.

What is the city’s greatest challenge?
Infrastructure/Roads/Recreation are key opportunities for a fast growing Auburn community that is adding almost 2,000 rooftops inWard 2 alone. We need to invest now in order to deal with inadequate access to parks, bike paths, and green space which will ensure they get there safely with properly signaled intersections.

On a scale of 1-5, with 1 being STRONGLY OPPOSE and 5 being STRONGLY SUPPORT, please indicate if you Strongly Oppose (SO), Oppose (O), Neither Oppose or Support (NOS), Support (S), or Strongly Support (SS) the statement below. If you do not know (DK), so indicate.
The city council should make a concerted effort to support economic development efforts.

5—Strongly support

How would you make Auburn more business-friendly?
Making Auburn more business friendly comes from making Auburn more resident friendly…by focusing on growing the quality of life in the area new business will be easier to recruit and existing business will remain. Much needs to be done in this arena in my Ward on key corridors including Donahue, Richland and Martin Luther King Jr.

Hal Walker: No response

WARD 4

Barry Davis
BRIEF BIO:
Barry Davis lived in Auburn for over 25 years, a degree from Auburn University. He currently works as a collaborative entrepreneur and business mentor and motivator with corporations and small cities.

What has prepared you for a seat on the city council?
Working with citizens, business owners and other city administrators have prepared me.

What is your relationship to the Auburn business community?
Concerned Citizen

What are your top three financial priorities while in office?
* Citizens
* Education
* Public Safety

What is the city’s greatest challenge?
Growth

On a scale of 1-5, with 1 being STRONGLY OPPOSE and 5 being STRONGLY SUPPORT, please indicate if you Strongly Oppose (SO), Oppose (O), Neither Oppose or Support (NOS), Support (S), or Strongly Support (SS) the statement below. If you do not know (DK), so indicate.
The city council should make a concerted effort to support economic development efforts.

4—Support

How would you make Auburn more business-friendly?
Meet with, listen, support, and communicate with citizens & small business owners

Jim Ryan
BRIEF BIO:

19 year resident of Ward 4 (Auburn); President (current), Burke Place Homeowner’s Association (Auburn); Happily married for 30 years to Renee Twombly (medical writer); Family: daughter, Thea J. Ryan (Auburn H.S. 2009, advertising professional); five sisters, two brothers; Ph.D. and Masters degrees from University of North Carolina—Chapel Hill (English, religious history); J.W. Liles Professor of English at Auburn University (19 years); senior faculty member, researcher and instructor for generations of educators, researchers, lawyers, ministers, business executives, and writers; retail store manager, Eastern Mountain Sports (6 years)

What has prepared you for a seat on the city council?
My service and leadership skills have developed over decades of community, academic, and administrative work. As a professional educator, retail manager, AU researcher, family man, and neighborhood president, I’m well prepared to support outstanding schools, commercial success, city services, and public safety.

What is your relationship to the Auburn business community?
Strong supporter of business development in Auburn, understanding our city’s very heavy reliance on sales taxes for the city budget. Businesses should be recruited to Auburn with an eye to long-term positive relationships with community goals.

What are your top three financial priorities while in office?
1. Support top-flight public education.
2. Manage traffic sensibly and improve public spaces (greenways, walkways, recreational facilities).
3. Work toward a high-tech city while keeping our village charm.

What is the city’s greatest challenge?
Working steadily toward a high-tech, growing, improving city that still values its village charm and rewarding way of life. And do all of this while maintaining a strong and supportive relationship with Auburn University, the business community, and other key stakeholders in Auburn’s civic progress.

On a scale of 1-5, with 1 being STRONGLY OPPOSE and 5 being STRONGLY SUPPORT, please indicate if you Strongly Oppose (SO), Oppose (O), Neither Oppose or Support (NOS), Support (S), or Strongly Support (SS) the statement below. If you do not know (DK), so indicate.
The city council should make a concerted effort to support economic development efforts.

4—Support. Auburn should continue to promote business development that supports our city’s long term goals.

How would you make Auburn more business-friendly?
I am pleased to observe that Auburn currently is friendly to business development. Businesses will continue to invest in Auburn so long as our core values remain strong: top-flight schools, ethical government, public safety, embrace of technology and architectural excellence, connecting business success with respect for tradition and neighborhood.

Brett Smith
BRIEF BIO:
I am husband to Haley and father to 3-year-old daughter Dagny (and Darcy, due 11/30). Haley and I are co-founders of the law firm Huff Smith Law, on the corner of College and Samford. Our firm focuses on small business/nonprofit legal work. We attend Church of the Highlands. I serve on the following boards: United Way of Lee County, Auburn Green Space Advisory Board & Auburn Young Professionals. I quarterly teach a free class on starting a small business at the Auburn Public Library, and work as an adjunct professor teaching American government. I earned four degrees: B.S., M.P.A., J.D. & LL.M.

What has prepared you for a seat on the city council?
As an attorney, to zealously advocate for my clients, listen, communicate openly & problem-solve. As a board member, the ability to work in tandem with community stakeholders to accomplish goals, to analyze critically & to motivate. As an instructor, to educate and inspire. As a father, empathy, love & support.

What is your relationship to the Auburn business community?
I am a small business owner helping other small businesses & nonprofits. Every dollar earned in our local business community is a dollar going towards a dance class, t-ball team, tutoring & putting food on the table. I work hard for our business owners; when they succeed, we all succeed.

What are your top three financial priorities while in office?
Safety, Education & Infrastructure (in no particular order).

What is the city’s greatest challenge?
Auburn is an exceptional place to live and work. It is a shining city on a hill. We must maintain our high standards as we gain new neighbors and be mindful of our rich history as we move into the future. We all must work together to do good!

On a scale of 1-5, with 1 being STRONGLY OPPOSE and 5 being STRONGLY SUPPORT, please indicate if you Strongly Oppose (SO), Oppose (O), Neither Oppose or Support (NOS), Support (S), or Strongly Support (SS) the statement below. If you do not know (DK), so indicate.
The city council should make a concerted effort to support economic development efforts.

5--Strongly Support

How would you make Auburn more business-friendly?
Continue to invest in our public education to train our future workforce. Continue to improve on our parks and recreation programs and facilities to encourage healthy lifestyles and community involvement. Uphold our commitment to public safety, keeping our citizens and businesses safe. Be innovative in ways we address problems, and stable in our future actions. Maintain an environment where we all work together, no matter your profession, trade or vocation, in doing good for each other, ourselves and our community.

WARD 5

Steven Dixon
BRIEF BIO:
Steven Dixon is a small business owner, the founder of Steven Dixon Media. His company primarily produces professional videos and photography for local businesses and real estate agents as well as corporate clients. Steven earned his B.A. in Communications and minored in Political Science. Having grown up, received his education and began his career in Auburn, Steven is well versed in our community and believes that an understanding of the culture, community, and issues that affect the citizens is crucial to serving on city council. Steven currently serves on the Auburn City Schools Business Education Advisory Board.

What has prepared you for a seat on the city council?
I had to sacrifice a lot of personal wants and make smart financial decisions when my company began. Clients describe me as a great listener as I am able to turn their concepts into reality. Listening and making smart financial decisions are leadership attributes that the Auburn City Council needs.

What is your relationship to the Auburn business community?
Over the past few years, I have developed great relationships with local business owners, creating media content for many. I often participate in local events such as business after hours, and the Auburn Young Professional Group.

What are your top three financial priorities while in office?
1. Promote private and public partnerships between the city government, non-profits and philanthropists that address our community needs.
2. Continue the financial support for funding our city school system.
3. Make sure the city budget is financially responsible, not forcing a higher tax burden on the Auburn population.

What is the city’s greatest challenge?
There is distrust between the City of Auburn and its residents. I will be dedicated to creating a two-way conversation between the city and residents to strengthen public trust. The city administration needs to be reviewed and audited to ensure that we have the best possible government.

On a scale of 1-5, with 1 being STRONGLY OPPOSE and 5 being STRONGLY SUPPORT, please indicate if you Strongly Oppose (SO), Oppose (O), Neither Oppose or Support (NOS), Support (S), or Strongly Support (SS) the statement below. If you do not know (DK), so indicate.
The city council should make a concerted effort to support economic development efforts.

5—Strongly support

How would you make Auburn more business-friendly?
Our business community can take some proactive steps to be more transparent. We need to review permitting process and identify and address potential issues. Our government needs to be transparent to prospective businesses by creating a new business guide highlighting important fees, deadlines and changes to ordnances.
Additionally, I would love to see a mentorship program begin between the Auburn Chamber members and Auburn High School students.

Brian O’Neil
BRIEF BIO:
O’Neil has lived in Auburn for nearly thirty years and is a product of Auburn City Schools. Upon graduation from Auburn University with a degree in International Business – Finance, O’Neil began a successful banking career while committing himself to community service through the Auburn Chamber, Auburn Rotary Club, Leadership Lee County and other organizations. In 2011, O’Neil moved to Atlanta to help launch a construction and design ministry and work as a consultant in real estate and construction. O’Neil moved back to Auburn in 2013. He is married to the former Caroline Myers and has four children.

What has prepared you for a seat on the city council?
Auburn needs LEADERS, not politicians. I have never held a political position. And that’s a plus. My experience is in leading people towards a common vision and in unity. I have done so effectively in the business, nonprofit and church world.

What is your relationship to the business community?
I possess deep relationships in the business community having worked as a banker, insurance agent, business consultant and advocate for the Chamber. I believe in Auburn’s thriving ecosystem of business as one of the driving forces behind our healthy community and its growth.

What are your top three financial priorities while in office?
I believe strongly that Auburn must continue to invest in job creation and economic development. These will sustain the priorities of funding our school system, parks & recreation, public safety and infrastructure. That’s four priorities but dismissing one would be a disservice to the community.

What is the city’s greatest challenge?
Our biggest challenge is bringing citizens back into community and fellowship. We don’t have to agree on all the issues, but we have to unite under a common vision for our great city. Auburn deserves leadership that is focused on unifying the community and collectively progressing towards a better future.

On a scale of 1-5, with 1 being STRONGLY OPPOSE and 5 being STRONGLY SUPPORT, please indicate if you Strongly Oppose (SO), Oppose (O), Neither Oppose or Support (NOS), Support (S), or Strongly Support (SS) the statement below. If you do not know (DK), so indicate.
The city council should make a concerted effort to support economic development efforts.

5 (Strongly Support)

How would you make Auburn more business-friendly?
One of my primary focuses is continuing to help create jobs through economic development. Jobs solve so many of the City’s financial needs, including providing for education, parks & recreation, public safety and infrastructure. We must continue to recruit diverse industry and quality jobs to Auburn.

I will work on strengthening our ecosystem for small business and entrepreneurship. We need to intentionally support and recruit this sector of our economy. This includes removing barriers of entry, training and educational opportunities, and financial incentives where appropriate. Let’s erase any negative perception that Auburn is a difficult place to do business.

Walter Northcutt
BRIEF BIO:

Auburn 2020 Plan — Public Safety Committee; Auburn City Schools: PTA president three years; chairman Project Graduation two years; Fund Raising Rev. Committee; AHS Athletic Booster Club — president; Auburn Kiwanis Club Board of Directors; Auburn Dixie Youth Baseball/Softball Board Member, Coach for 17 years; Auburn Youth Football - founding board member; Auburn United Methodist Church - board member, Youth Sunday school teacher 17 years. ; Lee County Achievement Center - Board of Directors; Lee County Child Advocacy Center - Board of Directors; Lee County Industrial Board; Lee County Board of Realtors - Complaint Rev. Comm.

What has prepared you for a seat on the city council?
Extensive experience dealing with legal matters involving issues with the City. Including zoning, planning, public safety. Thirty three years of legal practice and as a small business owner. Advising clients on life changing issues has prepared me to make tough decisions like members of the City Council have to make.

What is your relationship to the business community?
Representing Auburn businesses I know and understand their issues. I have been a small business man in Auburn for 33 years. I have received the endorsement of the Lee County Board of Realtors for Ward 5 and voted Employer of the Year by the Lee County Professional Women's Association.

What are your top three financial priorities while in office?
Insure we continue to help adequately fund the school system, public safety, fire and police departments. Funding of long term infrastructure needs and providing financial assistance to small businesses and industry to insure an adequate successful tax base.

What is the city’s greatest challenge?
Handling growth. The downtown area is an example but all areas of Auburn government are affected by growth. Fire and police protection, parks and rec., businesses, schools, infrastructure. And did I mention PARKING.

On a scale of 1-5, with 1 being STRONGLY OPPOSE and 5 being STRONGLY SUPPORT, please indicate if you Strongly Oppose (SO), Oppose (O), Neither Oppose or Support (NOS), Support (S), or Strongly Support (SS) the statement below. If you do not know (DK), so indicate.
The city council should make a concerted effort to support economic development efforts.

5--Strongly support

How would you make Auburn more business-friendly?
Review codes and code enforcement to make it easy and simple for businesses to understand and comply with and not hamper or interfere with their ability to succeed. Insure adequate infrastructure for businesses that want to locate in Auburn. Most importantly listen and address their concerns as quickly as possible.

WARD 6

Sarah Brown
BRIEF BIO:
I am rooted in our town and have invested personally and professionally in Auburn. Graduating from both AHS and AU, after traveling with my husband Drews construction career, we returned to Auburn to raise our three children (Morgan, Griffin and Alana).

As the former co-owner of Wrapsody, I contributed countless hours developing events in our downtown and establishing the Downtown Merchants (DMA). I have served publicly on our Planning Commission for six years, as chair for three, currently serve on the Board for the Auburn Chamber of Commerce and now work with Three Sixty developing an interiors division.

What has prepared you for a seat on the city council?
Experience and understanding of the process - through my involvement and first-hand experience on the Planning Commission, the Chamber, and the DMA. I have been involved in planning and decision-making and been consistent yet open-minded in strategic decisions to place our town in a position for growth and continued restoration.

What is your relationship to the Auburn business community?
Friend, advocate and champion. I have owned a small business, currently developing a new business, and know first-hand what it takes to run a business. I have served our business community on the Chamber board as well as Downtown Auburn and have solid relationships with many business owners.

What are your top three financial priorities while in office?
Safety & Services: keeping quality of life at the level we expect and deserve
School System: meeting the growth needs that it faces, brick and mortar AND help empower teachers, coaches and administration.
Infrastructure: finishing the remarkable plans we have currently for Downtown, Opelika Rd, Northwest Auburn, Parks and Recreation.

What is the city’s greatest challenge?
Our greatest challenge continues to be change: proactive planning, decision making, and finding solutions coming from the collaboration of leaders and involved citizens. We can embrace our opportunities with creativity and a community/family approach. “Change is hard at first, messy in the middle, gorgeous at the end.” (Sharma).

On a scale of 1-5, with 1 being STRONGLY OPPOSE and 5 being STRONGLY SUPPORT, please indicate if you Strongly Oppose (SO), Oppose (O), Neither Oppose or Support (NOS), Support (S), or Strongly Support (SS) the statement below. If you do not know (DK), so indicate.
The city council should make a concerted effort to support economic development efforts.

5 - (SS) Absolutely!

How would you make Auburn more business-friendly?
Local business is the backbone of our local economy, providing the taxes that ultimately fund the things about our town we love: safety, schools and services. We must encourage and educate our citizens to shop local and "Shop Alabama."

We are business-friendly—named one of the top 10 by Forbes. Our local entrepreneurs are creative, dedicated people that provide full and part-time jobs to our residents. Their success requires a local government that provides improved access as they face changes in demographics and technology and nurtures the success of each business: from the largest industry to the smallest coffee shop.

Brad Donnelly
BRIEF BIO: I was born and raised in Auburn. Graduated from Auburn High School and Auburn University. From 1975-1981, Police Officer at the Auburn Police Department. From 1981-1983, as a Deputy Sheriff at the Lee County Sheriff's Office. I served on the Ronald Reagan White House Protection Detail for the United States Secret Service (USSS) from 1983-1985. From 1985-1989, I served as an Investigator (USSS) Office of Investigations Norfolk, VA. From 1989-1993, I served as a Investigator for the (ATF) in Macon, Georgia. From 1993-2012, I served as the Certified Arson and Explosives Investigator/Instructor, Columbus, GA.

What has prepared you for a seat on the city council?
I have 43 years of Public Service in various law enforcement positions in the area of Public Trust. I had 33 years with a "Top Secret" Security Clearance with access to the highest levels of the U.S. Government facilities, U.S. Presidents, U.S. Presidential Candidates and Foreign Dignitaries.

What is your relationship to the Auburn business community?
I ran for City Council in 2014 and met many of the local Auburn business owners during that race. Many who I still remain associates with and remain in close contact with. I am a co-owner of a family owned Rental Properties Company in Auburn since 2001.

What are your top three financial priorities while in office?
Keeping the already great Auburn City Schools fully funded and moving forward over the next 20 years. Infrastructure issues such as paving , widening streets and keeping the sewer, water and roadway infrastructure progressing forward to meet the heavy needs of the future. Continue major funding for new recreational facilities.

What is the city’s greatest challenge?
Strategic Planning initiatives for the heavy growth that is expected in the next 25 years. To have a Well-controlled, Methodical, Precise growth track to keep Auburn growing at a manageable pace so that Safety issues such as a well resourced Police and Fire Department are prioritized to keep ahead of the growth.

On a scale of 1-5, with 1 being STRONGLY OPPOSE and 5 being STRONGLY SUPPORT, please indicate if you Strongly Oppose (SO), Oppose (O), Neither Oppose or Support (NOS), Support (S), or Strongly Support (SS) the statement below. If you do not know (DK), so indicate.
The city council should make a concerted effort to support economic development efforts.

5--Strongly Support.

How would you make Auburn more business-friendly?
I supported a business-friendly environment in 2014. Many local businesses told me in 2014 and even today they feel ignored and not included in the many initiatives being provided to other businesses. There are too many unnecessary restrictions and "Red Tape" being placed on our businesses. Many left Auburn and moved to Opelika because of the restrictions and the unrealistic time-tables being placed on many of the small local "home-grown" family businesses. Much more needs to be done to keep our long-time family businesses in Auburn and cut the "Red Tape."

Bob Parsons: Decline

WARD 7

Amy Crew
BRIEF BIO:
Crew holds an Ed. S. and M. S. from Auburn University, and a M.S. and B.A. both from Troy University. Crew is an educator and was a Realtor® in Auburn.

Crew has served as PTA presidents, graduated Leadership Lee Co., served the executive committee of the LCAC, graduated Auburn’s Citizens’ PSA, been Team Captains for Relay for Life, participated in Lee County’s Witches Ride, was president of Junior League of Lee County, and was DKG Pi Chapter president, both which partner with local foundations. Crew serves on the CAC for the AOMPO. Crew is also an active member of AUMC.

What has prepared you for a seat on the city council?
Living and engaging in Auburn for 20 years has prepared me to serve the city council. I serve on wide-ranging committees and support local events. I have the knowledge of where Auburn has been and what we've done in the last 20 years in order to help guide us.

What is your relationship to the Auburn business community?
Although I am an educator, the Auburn business community is vital, and I have a strong relationship and respect with our business community. Throughout the years in Auburn, I have worked in the business community as a Realtor® and in insurance.

What are your top three financial priorities while in office?
fiscal responsibility/finances, construction/development, and education

What is the city’s greatest challenge?
Auburn is a great city and I believe its greatest challenge now is in what direction do we go and how with everyone working towards common goals.

On a scale of 1-5, with 1 being STRONGLY OPPOSE and 5 being STRONGLY SUPPORT, please indicate if you Strongly Oppose (SO), Oppose (O), Neither Oppose or Support (NOS), Support (S), or Strongly Support (SS) the statement below. If you do not know (DK), so indicate.
The city council should make a concerted effort to support economic development efforts.

5—Strongly support

How would you make Auburn more business-friendly?
We need higher end retailers, for one, but ultimately, this is best answered from a committee formed from various parts of Auburn's business.

Jay Conner
BRIEF BIO:

Life-long resident of Auburn (53 years old)
Construction Manager, Barrett-Simpson, Inc.; Assoc. Broker, Auburn Realty
Graduate of AHS; B. S. Commerce & Business Admin, University of Alabama; Attended Graduate School (MBA) Troy University
Married to Crysten Conner with two children, both attend(ed) ACS.
Current Chairman Board of Equalization (3rd term); Announcing Coordinator, Miracle League of East Alabama; AUMC Food Pantry.
Formerly: Metropolitan Planning Organization; APR Youth Head Coach (Baseball, Football, Basketball); Auburn Chamber Board of Directors; Treasurer, Lee County Assoc. of Realtors; City Council Appointed Task Force for Greenspace, Watershed.

What has prepared you for a seat on the City Council?
30 years of work experience in economic, infrastructure and real estate development, in Auburn and surrounding areas.

I have worked, gone to school, raised kids and coached kids here. I have worked with Planning, Public Works, Engineering, AWWB, WRM, City Council, Economic Development, creating value and benefits for Auburn residents.

What is your relationship to the Auburn business community?
I have worked and served in Auburn since 1988, representing hundreds of businesses and individuals in real estate transactions, developed property for multiple businesses and provided opportunities for countless Auburn product and service businesses on development projects.

I have always been an advocate for Auburn businesses.

What are your top three financial priorities while in office?
Full support and funding for Auburn City Schools
Enhancing/Improving Auburn Parks & Recreation facilities and programs for all ages
Full support and funding for Auburn Police, Fire and Safety

What is the city’s greatest challenge?
Being complacent and celebrating our successes and accolades rather than working to better serve our residents, businesses and institutions. We have to focus on our most fundamental goals, plan for the future, engage the community and implement policies and projects that we can complete now on behalf of our residents.

On a scale of 1-5, with 1 being STRONGLY OPPOSE and 5 being STRONGLY SUPPORT, please indicate if you Strongly Oppose (SO), Oppose (O), Neither Oppose or Support (NOS), Support (S), or Strongly Support (SS) the statement below. If you do not know (DK), so indicate.
The city council should make a concerted effort to support economic development efforts.

5 – Strongly Support

How would you make Auburn more business-friendly?
Change the culture of City Hall to: “How can we help you succeed?”
We should make sure that the perception of businesses is NOT that the City is making our business climate as regulation-intense as possible.
Simplify and speed up the permitting/zoning certificate/site plan approval/conditional use approval processes.
The City Council must do a better job of involving and communicating with our businesses and citizens with regard to proposed changes in policies that affect their lives and livelihood. We should never impose regulations that adversely impact our businesses and citizens.

Jay Hovey
BRIEF BIO:
I grew up in south Lee County. While in school at Auburn, I worked as a firefighter for the city for almost five years. After graduation, my wife Anna and I moved to Atlanta. Soon we were able to return to our hometown where I've worked in property management and now as a mortgage lender. I am the current Chairman of the board for United Way of Lee County, past president of the Kiwanis Club of Auburn, a member of the Chamber’s Board of Directors and the City’s Greenspace Advisory Board.

What has prepared you for a seat on the city council?
Involvement in a variety of service and civic organizations has given me perspective and appreciation for different views on issues that affect all of Auburn. We need leadership that is compassionate and thoughtful, but realizes the bigger picture to do what is best for the city.

What is your relationship to the Auburn business community?
I watch my family's small business and the struggles and successes that come with it. Being involved with the Chamber to advocate for businesses in Auburn has been one of my top objectives since 2006. I have served to promote and support our business community every day since.

What are your top three financial priorities while in office?
*Our schools are the leading factor in recruiting quality jobs to Auburn and a direct connection to our quality of life.
*Economic development and continued recruitment of businesses.
*Public safety is stretched as more people settle in Auburn. We must ensure they have every resource needed to protect our families.

What is the city’s greatest challenge?
Our greatest challenge is managing growth while encouraging progress. We must present ideas with an open mind and be willing to consider options that are best for our city as a whole.

On a scale of 1-5, with 1 being STRONGLY OPPOSE and 5 being STRONGLY SUPPORT, please indicate if you Strongly Oppose (SO), Oppose (O), Neither Oppose or Support (NOS), Support (S), or Strongly Support (SS) the statement below. If you do not know (DK), so indicate.
The city council should make a concerted effort to support economic development efforts.

5 – Strongly Support

How would you make Auburn more business-friendly?
Auburn's business community is vibrant. As a Chamber of Commerce Board member I have enjoyed a front row seat as I've watched new businesses come to Auburn and as many of our favorites have expanded. The city’s role should be one of support and guidance. I would encourage our city to continue to be accessible to our business owners and operators and maintain an open line of communication.

Laura Mirarchi: DECLINE

Andrew Puent
BRIEF BIO:
I served in the military from 1998-2006 and fought for our country in a war.

What has prepared you for a seat on the city council?
Seeing our country decline with respect to each other, being an officer in the military for 8 years, a teacher for 4 years and an adjunct professor for 3 and lastly being a Dad

What is your relationship to the Auburn business community?
I have been shopping eating and drinking there for almost 20 years.

What are your top three financial priorities while in office?
My priorities financial speaking is to invest/save for the future. If anything, Auburns growth needs to slow down. My priority is to use common sense and inform my constituents and then represent what my community thinks is best.

What is the city’s greatest challenge?
Auburn is one of the nicest friendliest towns to live in, in the nicest friendliest part of the country. What is not nice or friendly- Roads, Traffic and Parking

On a scale of 1-5, with 1 being STRONGLY OPPOSE and 5 being STRONGLY SUPPORT, please indicate if you Strongly Oppose (SO), Oppose (O), Neither Oppose or Support (NOS), Support (S), or Strongly Support (SS) the statement below. If you do not know (DK), so indicate.
The city council should make a concerted effort to support economic development efforts.

4—Support

How would you make Auburn more business-friendly?
I would have looked into buying the developmental area behind Waffle House, Spencer Lumber, Drake and Grant Street. That would be great parking while cleaning up Auburn. That would have let downtown extend and preserved more the Village Appeal that we all fell in love with.

WARD 8

Marlene Bowman
BRIEF BIO:
A native of Birmingham, who grew up in Chattanooga, Tennessee, I came to Auburn as student and like many alums, decided to stay. A resident of Auburn for over 35 years and realtor with Prestige Properties, I also enjoy managing our family horse farm. Prior to becoming a realtor, I was assistant to the CEO for one of the automobile suppliers.
Past service includes volunteer for the schools, food bank, Junior League, Habitat for Humanity, and the Administrative Board of AUMC. I am a past president of the Auburn Dixie Youth. More recently I was on the Citizen’s Task Force.

What prepared you for a seat on city council?
Working on the Citizen’s Task Force with talented professionals gave me an opportunity to look at alternative ideas for growth and development. Although we came together with different ideas, we were able to create a shared vision for a better Auburn that addressed the concerns of residents.

What is your relationship to the Auburn Business Community?
I am a Realtor and member of the Lee County Association of Realtors. I strongly believe it is important to support our local small businesses and do so by shopping locally as much as possible.

What are your top three financial priorities?
* Make small businesses a priority and provide resources and incentives for locals to build a sustainable business.
* Develop a plan to bring in higher paying jobs. Create an alliance with the university and become an incubator for research transitioning into business.
*Provide continued support for our schools and recreation facilities.

What is the city’s greatest challenge?
Our greatest challenge is managing our growth while protecting our quality of life. People value the lifestyle which is unique to our college town. We must do a better job of protecting that while growing in a manner that appeals to residents of all ages.

On a scale of 1-5, with 1 being STRONGLY OPPOSE and 5 being STRONGLY SUPPORT, please indicate if you Strongly Oppose (SO), Oppose (O), Neither Oppose or Support (NOS), Support (S), or Strongly Support (SS) the statement below. If you do not know (DK), so indicate.
The city council should make a concerted effort to support economic development efforts.

5—Strongly support

How would you make Auburn more business friendly?
I believe we should encourage the start-up of more small business by providing resources that help them succeed. Locals have expressed the desire to be afforded incentives that we have given to newcomers. A top priority must be to provide space and resources for new business to incubate. I would work to create an alliance with AU to develop this. We have some of the brightest minds in the world in our community and we should network with them to give entrepreneurs the help they need to develop their products and build strong business plans.

Tommy Dawson
BRIEF BIO: I began my career in public service with the Auburn Police Department in 1987, retiring as Police Chief in 2013. I graduated from the FBI National Academy in Quantico, VA in 2006. I also graduated from Faulkner University with a BS in Criminal Justice in 2009. Upon retiring, I ran unopposed for Auburn City Council, serving the last four years. My wife, Kandi and I have been married 30 years. We have one daughter, Hannah, who is a nurse at EAMC. Hannah is married to Judson Scott who is a police officer with the Auburn Police Department.

What has prepared you for a seat on the city council?
I have over 30 years of experience in Public Service, 26 with the Auburn Police Department and four serving on the Auburn City Council. Throughout my entire public service career, I have worked closely with the Auburn community in some capacity. I am dedicated to moving Auburn forward.

What is your relationship to the Auburn business community?
I have experienced a great relationship with the Auburn business community. In my 30 plus years, I have worked with nearly every business in our community. This is evidenced by receiving “The Chairman’s Award” from the Auburn Chamber of Commerce in 2013. This is one of my most cherished awards.

What are your top three financial priorities while in office?
1. Education: Top funding must continue for our school systems.
2. Public Safety: A priority to keep our children safe in our school system and to maintain the high quality of life for the citizens of Auburn.
3. Infrastructure: Citizen survey lists traffic flow as a major concern, particularly in the downtown area.

What is the city’s greatest challenge?
Maintaining the high quality of life Auburn citizens have grown accustomed to living. Auburn has received national recognition as one of the best places to live. With rapid growth, we must be able to channel this growth in a way that will allow us to maintain Auburn’s uniqueness and charm.

On a scale of 1-5, with 1 being STRONGLY OPPOSE and 5 being STRONGLY SUPPORT, please indicate if you Strongly Oppose (SO), Oppose (O), Neither Oppose or Support (NOS), Support (S), or Strongly Support (SS) the statement below. If you do not know (DK), so indicate.
The city council should make a concerted effort to support economic development efforts.

5 – Strongly support

How would you make Auburn more business-friendly?
Continue to promote a business friendly environment that we all share in Auburn. As the police chief, I encouraged our officers to be ambassadors for the city. As a Councilperson, I will ask our city manager to continue this attitude among city employees. I have worked with Economic Development to determine the needs of our local businesses and will work to meet those needs where it is appropriate and possible.

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