15 applicants queue up for interim Logan City appointment

LOGAN – The members of the Logan City Council are reviewing applications from 15 candidates seeking an appointment to an interim seat on the municipal panel.

The council is scheduled to meet Tuesday to publicly interview those applicants and select a replacement to fill the vacancy in their ranks left by the recent resignation of Jess Bradfield.

Bradfield left the Logan City Council on Sept. 22 to assume a new role as Cache County’s Clerk/Auditor, leaving council members to appoint an interim replacement to serve out the 14 months of his unexpired term of office.

“I am seeking an appointment to the Logan City Council because of my love for the city and my passion for helping contribute to making it an even better place to live, work and play,” according to applicant Chase Anderson. He is a public relations specialist with experience in developing marketing strategies for Utah State University, Silicon Slopes Logan, the Downtown Alliance and the Cache Valley Economic Development Alliance.

Attorney Richard Steven Chambers says that “Logan is at a critical juncture … Decisions made today will affect Logan’s residents for the next half-century. I want to be part of those decisions.” Chambers completed undergraduate study in physics at USU, then obtained masters of business administration and law degrees at the University of Utah.

“I am very proud to be a citizen of Logan and would love to serve my community on the city council,” says Sara Menlove Doutre. “I have served on the Hillcrest Elementary School Community Council for the past six years and am excited to apply what I’ve learned to help the city on a broader basis.” Doutre’s professional experience includes helping states and school districts manage educational funding accountability.

Having lived in four of the city’s neighborhoods, applicant Keegan Garrity says, “I am representing a constituency that trusts me with the responsibility to voice their concerns and desires … I’m confident that the perspective I bring to the council will result in productive debate that will have a positive impact on Logan as a whole.” Garrity campaigned for a seat on the city council in 2019 and is a member of a citizen subcommittee investigating the possibility of changing the city council from at-large representation to a voter district system.

Applicant Dustin James Hansen promises to “bring new perspective, ideas and representation for more people” to the city council. Hansen is a multi-lingual military veteran and a member of the Utah National Guard with a background in political science. “It is critical,” he says, “that we get as much representation as possible in our government bodies and make decisions that help as many people as possible.”

Applicant Emerson James offers the city council the benefit of “diverse work experience, much of which has been focused on serving people and the local community.” James is a graduate of McPherson College and USU and is currently employed as a technical writer. “My varied career background … demonstrates my ability to learn about a variety of issues and perspectives.”

“Given Utah’s economy and population growth,” says applicant Katie Lee-Koven, “sustainability and diversified economic development will be one of the most important elements to thoughtfully and strategically grow Logan in a manner that balances the desires of the current citizens and those who want to move here.” Lee-Koven is director of the Nora Eccles Harrison Museum of Art at USU and serves on several community boards. “I appreciate the role the council plays in improving the lives of Logan residents,” she adds, “and want to join in this important work.”

Applicant Coreen C. Larsen offers to “bring helpful insight to the council” as an employer of more than 300 people and the owner of various business and developments. She is a native of Logan and a USU graduate. “I have an interest.” Larsen says, “in maintaining the direction that the council has taken regarding business development, infrastructure, housing, fiscal responsibility, environmental goals and safety.”

“This opportunity to represent our community comes at a great moment in time when our valley population is changing and expanding like never before,” says applicant Ernesto Lopez. A native of Tijuana, Lopez is an instructional designer for USU Extension and serves on the Logan City Library Latino Advisory Council and the Educational Excellence for Latinos initiative at Logan High School. “My professional background demonstrates a commitment to our community,” he adds. “I believe my interpersonal communications experience with various audiences will be a great asset to the council.”

Applicant Mario Mathis says that his interest in joining the city council “stems from a deep commitment to solving civic challenges, bringing people together and facilitating open, respectful dialogue between all stakeholders.” Mathis believes his experience as a businessman, public speaker and community leader makes him uniquely qualified to join the city council. “I have been motivated throughout my life by the idea of service leadership,” he adds.

“Although I have had the privilege of attaining advanced academic degrees, publishing, presenting at international conferences and interacting with influential individuals,” applicant Preston Parker explains, “the draw for me has always been the local community, the family and the individual.” Parker is an instructor in the USU department of Languages, Philosophy and Communication Strategies with a extensive background working with local organizations. “Serving as a member of the Logan City Council would be another way to serve the community I love so much.”

Applicant Sheri Phippen says that “Logan needs someone who gets cities, their people and how they operate. That would be me.” Phippen spent nearly a decade serving as city planner for Nibley and has worked with citizen groups, planning commissions, consultants and other stakeholders. “I believe in saying ‘yes’ whenever I can and trying to help people understand when the answer has to be ‘no’.”

Applicant Dean Quayle says he would bring the benefit of previous experience on the Logan City Council to the interim appointment. A Logan native and a military veteran, Quayle was appointed to fill a council vacancy in 2009 and won a four-year term on the panel beginning in 2010. “I have had the privilege of serving with most of the current council members, the mayor and the city staff,” Quayle explains. “I am familiar with budgeting, the different departments of the city and know of some of the challenges the city faces.”

“I wish to see city government serve a diverse citizenry to the fullest extent,” says applicant Paul C. Rogers, “and I believe that I can contribute to that goal without prejudice.” Rogers is a research ecologist and USU lecturer who has been involved with numerous environmental advocacy groups. “I would like to serve on the Logan City Council to fulfill a long-term desire to help my community,” he admits. “In particular, I feel that the interests of citizens in my neighborhood are often not adequately represented in decision-making.”

Applicant Richard H. Steele wants “to be of service to our community as it transitions each day into its future self.” With undergraduate degrees from both USU and Southern Utah State University, Steele is owner of Site Design Associates in Logan. He is also chair of the neighborhood council for the Wilson area of the city. He pledges to protect “that which is best about the Logan of today, while making decisions that will lead us to a brighter tomorrow in keeping with the sense of self and community that has served Logan so well in the past.”

The agenda for the council’s 5:30 p.m. meeting on Tuesday begins with three-minute statements by the applicants, followed by discussion and an initial vote to winnow the number of candidates. The council members will then interview the remaining applicants.

Council chair Amy Z. Anderson has expressed hope that council members will be able a select the interim replacement during that meeting, but acknowledged that the decision may need to be deferred until their next regular meeting on Oct. 20.

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