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Linda Malone: From mayor to citizen

2011: Where are they now? An update of the Sandy Post's top stories of the year
by:  LINDA MALONE

When former Mayor Linda Malone was edged out of office a year ago by a mere 65 votes, some residents were amazed.

Malone had been serving the city's best interests continuously for more than 20 years, the last 16 as mayor. No one doubted her loyalty or depth of service.

She had been singly or in-part responsible for many of the city's amenities. Among those are city parks, the SAM bus system, SandyNet, movies and concerts in the park, new police station and public library as well as Sandy Main Street and façade improvement programs.

But for the past year, she has been 'Citizen Malone,' which she was called publicly at a recent council meeting by City Councilor Jeremy Pietzold.

Malone has been seen at very few council meetings, but has continued to volunteer at city functions, particularly those centennial-year activities that she helped organize as chairwoman of the Centennial Committee.

But leaving behind such an intimate connection with the nuts and bolts of city and regional government was a difficult change to make in her lifestyle.

'There was an odd adjustment period that lasted for about six months,' she said. 'I'm still involved; see city emails; stay in touch with my friends on the council and in City Hall; and I always feel welcome there.

'But it feels like a different sense of belonging - a different perspective - that I get from being on the fringe; on the outside looking in.'

In her time away from the rigors of city affairs, Malone also has been quilting, spending more time with her husband, Tom, and visiting with her grandchildren on both coasts.

With Malone's departure from elected office, she'll be the first to admit the city continues to be a shining example to government entities in the region.

'I'm still extremely proud of the city,' she said. 'And I think it's going in the right direction. You don't change one person and change the direction of the city.'