Neighborhood servants


This morning on KFAQ's "Heartland" with Bruce Delay, I was talking about city council candidates, and I started to describe some of them as neighborhood leaders, but what I called them instead was "neighborhood servants." That's a very apt description of Maria Barnes (running in the Democrat District 4 primary), as well as Councilor Roscoe Turner (Democrat-3), Councilor Jim Mautino (Republican-6), and and candidate Al Nichols (Democrat-5).

These people rose to leadership in their neighborhoods because of their willingness to serve. As neighbors had problems with code enforcement, crime, zoning issues -- anything involving City Hall -- these neighborhood servants volunteered their time, knowledge, and expertise to resolve the problems.

In somewhat different ways, I see the same servant's heart at work in Rick Westcott (Republican-2) and John Eagleton (Republican-7). Rick gave of his time and talent last summer to head off the recall attempt. Rick also has given his time to service on the Sales Tax Overview Committee, the Community Development Block Grant committee, and various southwest Tulsa community organizations. John Eagleton donates his considerable barbecue skills for charity fundraisers and for neighborhood and church parties. (That's barbecue as in seasoned meat cooking in a gigantic smoker, not burgers over charcoal.) They're both attorneys, but they don't put on airs, and they're not hesitant to get their hands dirty and pitch in in whatever way is needed.

Cliff Magee (Republican-8) I don't know as well, but I know of his service as president of a different kind of neighborhood -- the Jones Riverside association, representing the interests of those who use the airport -- and his involvement in the Tulsa Air and Space Museum.

(This isn't meant to be an exhaustive list. I'm sure similar things could be said of other candidates.)

I see a combination in these people of a willingness to devote time and energy to helping their neighbors, and the expertise in dealing with City Hall to be effective in that pursuit. That's good preparation for being a City Councilor.

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This page contains a single entry by Michael Bates published on March 5, 2006 10:30 PM.

Thoughts on the District 4 race was the previous entry in this blog.

The Mother (Road) of all candidate forums is the next entry in this blog.

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