Ardmore City Commission candidates discuss term goals during Chamber of Commerce forum

Drew Butler
The Daily Ardmoreite

The Ardmore Chamber of Commerce hosted a candidate forum for all seven candidates running for the Ardmore City Commission. A series of three questions were posed to each candidate, and all candidates were given two minutes to answer each question. 

The forum was broken up into two sections with all of the candidates for Ward 2 which represents Ardmore’s Northeast answering their questions before the same questions were asked to the candidates for Ward 3 which represents Ardmore’s Southwest.

Ward 2 commission candidates take part in a public forum hosted by the Ardmore Chamber of Commerce Tuesday, March 30, 2021.

One of the questions asked each candidate to list three goals or priorities they would like to see during their term.

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John Credle, running for the Ardmore City Commission Ward 3 seat, speaks to attendees of a public forum Tuesday, March 30, 2021.

John Credle who is running for Ward 2 said one of his goals is working to get the homeless situation under control. He believes this can be done by treating the issue as a mission and working with nonprofits and mental health providers to provide them with a safe place to go. Another goal is seeing the streetscape project continue further across the tracks, ideally all the way to the HFV Wilson Community Center. A third goal would be to attract new police officers from within the community by promoting policing as a career to area students.

Angela Sharp, running for the Ardmore City Commission Ward 2 seat, speaks to attendees of a public forum Tuesday, March 30, 2021.

Angela Sharp who is running for Ward 2 said she would like to see improvements to the city’s water quality. She would also like to begin a low interest housing loan program to increase housing availability and quality of life for residents. A third goal would be to see infrastructure improvements to the city’s roads and waterlines, particularly in the Northeast.

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Brad Blackwood, running for the Ardmore City Commission Ward 2 seat, speaks to attendees of a public forum Tuesday, March 30, 2021.

Brad Blackwood who is running for Ward 2 said he would like to to see more street repair projects in the Northeast that would properly replace potholes in the area. He would also like to see more businesses opening in the Northeast to provide more commercial opportunities to residents.

Blake Gordon, running for the Ardmore City Commission Ward 3 seat, speaks to attendees of a public forum Tuesday, March 30, 2021.

Blake Gordon who is running for Ward 2 said he would like to see Ardmore become more pedestrian friendly by building more sidewalks in the Northeast that would better connect that area to downtown. He would also like to see a mental health response team that would respond for crisis calls for aid. Another goal is creating a destination downtown with many restaurants and businesses that would be on both sides of the tracks.

David Plesher, running for the Ardmore City Commission Ward 3 seat, speaks to attendees of a public forum Tuesday, March 30, 2021.

David Plesher who is running for Ward 3 said he would like to focus on security by ensuring that the police department is fully supported and funded and making sure streetlights are repaired promptly. He would also like to make sure the drinking water is clean and drinkable. A third goal is educating area students about municipal government and encouraging them to get involved in the community.

Eric Howard, running for the Ardmore City Commission Ward 3 seat, speaks to attendees of a public forum Tuesday, March 30, 2021.

Eric Howard who is running for Ward 3 said he would like make sure the city is fully prepared to deal with the ongoing COVID situation. He would also like to focus on mental health and by extension homelessness and crime by making sure nonprofits have what they need to thrive. He would also like to see infrastructure improvements.

Barbara Hisey who is running for Ward 3 said she would like to see more recycling options available in the city. She would also like to see the streetscape project extended in both directions, farther down East Main and up West Main.  She would also like to see a facility like The Clubhouse — but one with a focus on senior citizens — come to Ardmore.

Barbara Hisey, running for the Ardmore City Commission Ward 3 seat, speaks to attendees of a public forum Tuesday, March 30, 2021.

The full candidate forum is available to watch at Ardmoreite.com. Early voting begins Thursday and Friday at the Carter County Election Board, and election day will be Tuesday, April 6.