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Farmington’s new city councilor expected to be named by March 26

Farmington's new city councilor expected to be named by March 26
If all goes according to plan, the Farmington City Council should have its newest member in place by the time the next meeting of that body comes to an end early next week.

Mayor Nate Duckett, who is responsible for nominating an individual to fill the seat, said he anticipates forwarding a name to the council for its approval during the meeting. The seat has been vacant since Dec. 15, when Councilor Sean Sharer resigned after moving out of the district.

The council will meet at 5 p.m. Tuesday, March 26 in the council chambers at City Hall, 800 Municipal Drive.

The city began accepting applications for the vacant seat in January, and 12 people applied for the position, although one person later withdrew and another one was declared ineligible as they lived outside the district. The list of remaining applicants includes Andrew Caldwell, Luke Renner, Herman Buck, Robert Fitz, Nathan Thompson, Charles Kittle, Olena Erickson, Richmond Brannen, Stewart Logan and Travis Johnson.

Since the application window closed in February, Duckett said he conducted interviews with the 10 applicants who remained, with former Farmington mayor and state lawmaker Tom Taylor sitting in on six of those sessions and Deputy City Manager Shana Reeves taking part in the rest. After that, city staff members reached out to the references the applicants had listed in their information and received feedback from those folks.

Farmington Mayor Nate Duckett says he will be nominating an individual to fill the vacant District 2 City Council seat during the council's Tuesday, March 26 meeting.
Farmington Mayor Nate Duckett says he will be nominating an individual to fill the vacant District 2 City Council seat during the council’s Tuesday, March 26 meeting.

A second round of interviews then took place, Duckett said, leaving him ready to make a decision in time for next week’s council meeting.

The mayor said he has enjoyed the process and appreciates the chance to leave his mark on the council by choosing one of its members.

“It’s really a unique opportunity,” he said. “Not a lot of mayors have the chance to do that. I’ve put a lot of time and energy into it.”

Duckett said he was pleased with the quality of the applicants, explaining that he believed that several of them would serve the citizens of District 2 well.

The mayor said he began the process of looking for Sharer’s replacement with the belief that the new councilor would need to have a servant’s heart, given his belief that service to the public is an integral part of being a member of the council.

“I wanted to make sure we had somebody who understood that,” he said.

More: Vacant District 2 seat on Farmington City Council draws two more applicants

When going through the resumes of the applicants, Duckett said he was especially interested in folks who already were serving on community boards or commissions and had an idea of how municipal governments work.

“For me, it’s about who’s passionate about it and who can work well within the group we’ve already got,” he said.

Regardless of who he nominates, Duckett said he would encourage everyone who applied for the position to file to run for the seat during the next election cycle.

He said Taylor’s participation in the interview process and the insights he offered were invaluable. Taylor served as mayor from 1986 to 1998.

“Tom was such a great partner,” Duckett said. “ … It was really special to have a former mayor sit in on those interviews, and I’m really grateful for that.”

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The mayor said he was impressed with the diversity of the applicants, along with their professional accomplishments, while their interest in serving on the council left him feeling optimistic about the future of the city.

“We talk a lot about what leadership is supposed to look like in this community,” he said. “It’s good to know there are still folks out there who are excited about serving in a public role.”

The person who is appointed to the District 2 seat will serve through Dec. 31, 2025.

Mike Easterling can be reached at 505-564-4610 or Support local journalism with a digital subscription:

This article originally appeared on Farmington Daily Times: Farmington mayor impressed by diversity of applicants for council seat

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