Bob Martin files for open West Linn City Council spot
Martin served on Planning Commission from 2007-2014
With just less than a month remaining before the filing deadline on Aug. 28, West Linn has its first candidate for the November City Council election.
Former Planning Commissioner Bob Martin filed his official papers with the city Thursday, and will run for the seat vacated by Russ Axelrod when he was sworn in as mayor in June. After Axelrod was sworn in, the Council decided against appointing an interim City Councilor and opted instead to work as a four-person council until a November election.
"It has been my good fortune to have lived in West Linn for 30 years," Martin said in a press release. "I would like to give back to this community which has given so much to me."
Martin served on the Planning Commission from 2007 to 2014, and was chair of the Planning Commission in 2010 and 2011.
"During my tenure, I had the opportunity to hear hundreds of citizens testify," Martin said. "I was always impressed by their intelligence and eloquence. I believe that their collective wisdom is our greatest asset."
In announcing his candidacy, Martin identified citizen engagement as one of his primary areas of focus.
"The management culture of the city staff must change," Martin said. "Empowered citizens are not a threat, they are the lifeblood of the city. I intend to see citizen input honored, not managed."
Martin also emphasized collaborative discourse as a focal point of his campaign.
"As new issues arise, we must put aside past differences and work together to make sure every idea is heard, every voice is respected and that our solutions reflect our best efforts," Martin said. "My experience has shown me that when we work together toward a common goal, trust and mutual respect follow naturally."
Martin has owned a software management consulting firm for 25 years. He graduated from the University of Central Florida with a bachelors degree in mathematics, and went on to earn a masters degree in engineering management and Ph.D. in system science from Portland State University.
The deadline to file for the November election is Aug. 28. The term for the open Council seat expires in 2018.
To qualify for City Council, residents must be qualified electors and have lived in West Linn during the 12 months prior to the election.
Martin's full statement read as follows:
"It has been my good fortune to have lived in West Linn for 30 years. My wife Mary and I raised our children here, benefitting first hand from our excel-lent school system. When I traveled for work, I left my family in a safe and nurturing setting.
I would like to give back to this community which has given so much to me. In the spirit of service, I am stepping forward to run for City Council in Novembers election.
I made my living developing software and managing software development teams. I have a B.S. in Mathematics, an M.S. in Engineering Management, and a Ph.D in System Science. I have run my own company for the past 25 years helping businesses become more efficient and profitable.
It has also been my privilege to serve as a West Linn Planning Commissioner for seven years as well as chairing the Planning Commission for two years. During my tenure, I had the opportunity to hear hundreds of citizens testify. I was always impressed by their intelligence and eloquence. I believe that their collective wisdom is our greatest as-set.
As citizens, I believe that our role and our responsibility extends beyond listening to City Staff explain what they have decided for us. Whether it is the Arch Bridge/Town Center or a small development, planning should start with the vision of the citizens as expressed in the Comprehensive Plan and Neighborhood Plans. Citizens should be engaged and valued participants in the land-use process that will define West Linns future. I believe that the role of the City Staff should be to support and educate citizens in this effort. As councilor, I will work to make your voice and vision the guiding force.
In order for this to happen, there are two areas where change must occur. Neither is easy, both are essential. First, the management culture of the City Staff must change. Empowered citizens are not a threat, they are the lifeblood of the city. I intend to see citizen input honored, not managed.
Second, as new issues arise, we must put aside past differences and work together to make sure that every idea is heard, every voice is respected, and that our solutions reflect our best efforts. My experience has shown me that when we work together toward a common goal, trust and mutual respect follow naturally. I want to create an environment where this can hap-pen.
Working together we can find West Linns own balance between the preservation of our environment and growth, between those who want to become more city-like and those who want to remain suburban.
An empowered public and an efficient administration are not mutually exclusive. We can have both.
These problems can be solved. It is the wisdom of West Linns citizens that must solve them. I believe in that wisdom.
I hope you will believe in me."