Happy New Year, Lake Highlands! I hope you and your families shared a blessed Christmas season and a safe and sane New Year.

The Council is gearing up for a spring filled with the spirit of another political campaign. No matter how you feel about the issues at hand, your vote is important. That honor of expressing yourself in the voting booth is what so many of our countrymen and women have fought and died for in more than 230 years of defending our way of life. Wasting that gift of democracy seems so foolish, especially if you feel strongly about the way things are being handled in your city. Make up your mind today to get involved in a campaign with someone you feel is the best hope for your view of what the city should be doing to improve. Know your candidate’s steadfast feelings about the things most vital to you and your family or your business. At least when the election is over, you will know that you have a real right to complain when your representative slips on a topic or doesn’t live up to your expectations every time. However, there is one thing I have learned about Lake Highlands after my two terms as your representative: Timidity in e-mail is not one of your failings!

Remember, every seat on the Dallas City Council is up for grabs in May, including the mayor. By the time you read this, there may be as many as 12 names in the mayoral race. At this point, they are all male with varying years of business experience, political experience, public service records and a wide degree of public name recognition, depending on how long you have been in Dallas. Their ages vary by as much as three decades. This race is of major importance to the continued advancement of this city’s goals in the next four years. Choose wisely. Take the time to know the plans and directions your chosen candidate wants to take the city, but most of all, make sure he is a team builder of record. There may be as many as 10 new council members to deal with as well. A true consensus builder must be at the helm. Remember, each of the 14 districts is comprised of close to 85,000 people each. There is a lot of negotiating that must be done to get your opinion accepted.

Thank you, Lake Highlands, for allowing me the honor to serve you on the Council.