Meet the candidates: David Plesher runs for Ardmore City Commission Southwest Ward
Editor's note: Four candidates will be running for the Northeast Ward, and three will be running for Southwest. The Ardmoreite has sent each candidate a series of five questions. Each candidate had the same set of five questions and was asked to limit their answers to no more than 100 words per question. All questionnaires were sent at the same time, and each candidate had the same deadline to return their answers.
On Tuesday, April 6 registered voters in the City of Ardmore will go to the polls to select two new city commissioners: one for the city’s Northeast Ward, and one for the city’s Southwest Ward. The vote will be taken at large, so citizens will be able to vote for one candidate in each ward regardless of where they reside within the city.
Below are the answers from David Plesher who is running for the seat in Ardmore’s Southwest Ward. This is the final candidate questionnaire, and seven candidates have now been run.
1. Tell the community a bit about yourself. (Where are you from/when did you come to Ardmore? What is your work/education experience? Etc.)
DP: I was born in Pittsburgh, Pa. and raised in Monongahela, Pa. along the Monongahela River, graduated High school in Sioux City, Iowa, Jr. College in Grand Rapids, Michigan with an associate in Science, and graduated from Iowa State University with a bachelor of science in industrial engineering. I came to Ardmore 20 years ago to start up the new EJ facility at the Ardmore air park. I am the Distribution Center Manager at EJ where I am employed today. In 2004, my wife and I opened Main Street Coffee in downtown Ardmore, which has served Ardmore for 17 years now.
2. What inspired you to run for the Ardmore City Commission?
DP: I always tried to be active in my community. I am a 2004 graduate of Leadership Ardmore, served two terms on the board of the Chamber of Commerce, served three terms on the Ardmore Tourism Authority with one term as Chairman, and served 3 terms on the Ardmore Historic Preservation Board with one term as chairman. I volunteered as a math tutor in the Cities in Schools after-school program for a year. And wrote for the editorial Board of the Daily Ardmoreite. Running for city commissioner will allow me to use my experience to help better Ardmore.
3. What do you think is the biggest challenge facing Ardmore today?
DP: The first priority of city government is the safety of the citizens. I will work to keep our police department supported and funded. I will also encourage a strong relationship between the Ardmore City police and the Carter County Sheriff’s department. Keeping our residents safe is top priority. The next biggest challenge I see is updating the infrastructure of the city. I plan to get involved with the publics works group to see that they are getting the funding and support to solve the water quality problem. Water quality, streets and storm drainage are high on my priority list.
4. What new project or policy would you like to see come to Ardmore?
DP: I would like to see Depot Park completed. Then, it is time to move resources to update the infrastructure of the city. The water we drink should not be grey and smell and our streets are flooding too often. This break from building new would help the labor market to catch up with job openings. As far as a policy, I would like to see the City Commission set a policy to take an active role in getting into our schools and educating our youth on the role of city government and to encourage them as future leaders.
5. What can you bring for the citizens of your ward that your opponents cannot?
DP: Not knowing my opponents backgrounds, I can’t comment on their qualifications. But, I have the greatest respect for anyone willing to volunteer their time, money and effort to improve their community. Since all five commission seats are voted in by all residents of Ardmore, I feel that I can bring to the people of Ardmore a strong background of community service, over 30 years of experience in the infrastructure industry, and an engineering/cost management background. Being a small business owner in downtown Ardmore, I also have a vested interest in and a unique perspective of the future of Ardmore.