Mayor Angela Pearson: In her own words (part 1)
So after all the fights you’ve endured over the past year and a half, sitting here in the Mayor’s office, was it worth it?
I think it will be once we have our new City Manager in place and things start improving in the city. Really, it’s not about me, it’s about the people who live in Poplar Bluff and about making it easier to make a living and raise their families. My family has endured a lot during my term on the city council. We do this because we want to make a difference. If I make a difference, then it’s worth it.
What was going through your mind as you realized your side would be successful on election night back in April?
I have help! I actually have some real help on the council now and now I can start working on making real changes to help the city as a whole. I cried. I was happy and just relieved. I was so thankful to the citizens of Poplar Bluff.
So far what are you most proud of?
I would say that I am most proud of how so many people tell me that I am doing the right things for them. I always wanted to be a change agent and work for the people to the best of my ability. When the citizens sent me help on the council in April, it confirmed to me that maybe they think I am doing a good job for them. I just want to do my best for everyone.
During your time on City Council, what is something you’ve voted on that you would like to have another chance to look at?
I wish I would have had more time to review the contract before the sale of City Cable. I felt like I was lied to by the previous administration and now we have something that we have to live with and make work. I tried to get the vote to sell City Cable extended for two weeks so that we would have more time to review it but I could not make that happen. The previous administration seemed bent on pushing it through before the election.
What do you think the voters of the city were saying by electing you and your supporters for 5 straight contested
I think they were saying that they were fed up with the previous administration and that they wanted to be heard. I want them to be heard and I think the winners of the last five city council elections have the same feelings in mind about this. We may not be able to please everyone but I know with my heart that each of us the citizens elected are sincerely trying to work for our city as a whole and not just for the benefit of a select few.
There have been some Facebook pages that have popped up since the last election. What is your impression of them and do you plan to include them when making decisions you were elected to make?
I have always been an avid supporter of our constituents and citizens putting their views and concerns out there. I think that helps bring all of the ideas and views out in the open to be discussed. I welcome it fully.
Speaking of what had to be a tough decision, in light of the fact that you abstained, do you feel it was a good move by the rest of the City Council to make a change of City Manager?
I feel that it was a very hard decision, but possibly a necessary one to move forward with what the voters demanded. Lots of door to door interaction with citizens proved that changes were needed by the barrels. I can’t speak about this much further due to current litigation going on with the city and former City Manager but I certainly support the decision made by the council.
Photos courtesy of Linda Venable Photography.