Dear Citizens of Canton,
Please allow me the opportunity to introduce myself and share with you why I am excited to announce my candidacy for the Canton City Council. At this point in our City’s environment of conservative policies, active stewardship of resources and yet strategic opportunities for valued growth, development and prosperity, I seek to serve as your Council Member for Ward 2.
At age twelve, I moved from Marietta to Cherokee County where I have lived for the past thirty years. I attended E.T. Booth Middle School and graduated from Etowah High School. After high school, I attended Kennesaw State University where I received a Bachelors degree in Art, and then I completed a Masters degree in Educational Leadership from Covenant College in Lookout Mountain, Georgia.
My wife, Sarah Becker Durham and I have been married for over fourteen years, and we are blessed with five children. We have called Canton our home during these fourteen years, and most importantly, we have had the privilege of living in downtown Canton for the past nine years. We attend Fellowship Bible Church, where our core beliefs and guiding principles are affirmed.
I have been a teacher for 21 years, an administrator at Fellowship Christian High School for over six years and I have coached varsity soccer for eleven years, so I value education and its benefits to our young people. I have been honored to be a part of the Boy Scout Adult Leadership and committees of Troop 241 located here in Canton. Since my oldest son joined Troop 241, we have been actively engaged in City of Canton projects including work on hiking trails and marking the storm drains. Serving as a leader in the Boy Scouts demonstrates my strong interest and value of character, especially helping boys become men and teaching them to experience the adventures of the outdoors.
Why do I want to serve you and the City of Canton? There are numerous issues and concerns that have attracted my attention, and I believe it is the right time for me to serve you our neighbors by addressing some of these issues and by bringing a new perspective to the Canton City Council. First, I pay taxes along side of you, so I want our City to continue to be a good steward of our financial resources. Therefore, I believe we should bring fiscally conservative policies to the City and keep the millage rate low. We must be responsible with our tax dollars and use them and other assets of our City to encourage a thriving business environment in Canton. However, we must not forget our City infrastructure, and therefore, we must look for new solutions to issues surrounding our sidewalks, roads, and the water and sewer systems. Additionally, as an artist, I am committed to the arts and creativity in Canton. Events and art attractions help our neighbors engage with one another and build a stronger community. Furthermore, I want the City of Canton to remain a family friendly and safe place, so having firemen and policemen, who are appreciated, equipped and ready to help and serve is important. My family enjoys hiking at Boling Park, playing sports on the fields and running on the hills at Heritage Park, so parks and places that encourage our community are valuable City resources to me, and we should continue to preserve and develop the connectivity of our city parks. My family and I love our downtown and the historic heritage it holds as the county seat, so pursuing sensible development toward a vibrant downtown experience is important to me as well.
In short, I want to serve you and your family through doing all I can to preserve the character and community of Canton, promote the conservative values of Canton, and lastly, help Canton prosper economically through good stewardship of her resources and opportunities. Will you please consider voting for me for City Council this November 5th. Thank you so much and I look forward to hopefully meeting you in the coming weeks.