The Cross Timbers Gazette asked each candidate in a contested race to answer a brief questionnaire to help voters make an informed decision at the polls this May. Candidates running for Flower Mound Town Council Place 4 are Don McDaniel and Jim Engel. Compiled by Lyn Rejahl Pry, Editor
Current Occupation: Retired Business Leader
Education: Bachelor of Science in Economics and Business Administration from Aquinas College, Grand Rapids, Mich.
Current civic involvement: Flower Mound Board of Adjustment and Oil and Gas Appeals Board, Pecan Meadows HOA President
Past civic service: Junior Achievement advisor for five-years. I was also involved with Boy Scouts in the 1990s for 7 years when my son was a member of the scouts. Like many Flower Mound residents, prior to being retired I worked a demanding job which required 55- to 60-hours per week and did not have the ability to participate in civic activities. I now have the time and desire to do so going forward.
Why voters should elect you: I am an experienced business leader that will take a balanced, level-headed approach to my duties when in office. I will review each proposal individually based on its merits and what it brings to the town and vote accordingly for the benefit of the town’s residents. We have had a Town Council that has been dysfunctional for the past year with accusations of ethics violations and visible animosity among members. The council has not been as effective as it should be, because– at times– it seems that some members are more concerned with poking the other side, rather than working together for the town. I am not part of either side, but rather in the middle and can see both sides of the argument. I can and will work with any of the council members. I will listen and discuss differences to gain consensus agreement. I will bridge the gap between the groups. I have done that multiple times in my career, especially when being acquired by a new company and having to learn to fit in to a new organization.
The main issues facing your town and how you would resolve them: The town has a number of issues before it. For the sake of brevity I will name just a couple. We have some infrastructure concerns and transportation issues in the town. We need to better balance the tax base in the town by bringing in more commercial activity to diversify the tax base and reduce the burden on residents. We need an affordable senior housing solution. As to how to solve these and other issues, we have a talented and veteran town manager and staff. Based on my frequent attendance at town meetings, at times the solution is decided on by the mayor and Town Council before input from the town staff. The approach that I would propose would be a collaborative effort where the Town Council sets the direction by creating a prioritized list of the town’s issues which has consensus among the council members. We then need to have work sessions with the town manager and key staff members where they are assigned for the staff to come up with solutions. The staff would present and discuss their solutions and alternatives and after agreement, we would work together to get them implemented and if necessary, funded. I am a proponent of using the town staff’s expertise to help solve the issues.
Any additional comments: I am a town resident who cares about the town and its future. While I am a political novice, I have an extensive background in private business that can benefit the town. I am committed to doing the right thing. I ask for your vote on May 7.
Current Occupation: Self Employed
Education: Harlingen High School, Texas A&M, University of North Texas
Current civic involvement: Flower Mound Planning & Zoning Vice Chair; McKamy Middle School PTA, President; Flower Mound Foundation, Board of Directors; Summit Club, Vice President; Save the Long Prairie Cabin Commission; Flashes of Hope Photographer – DFW Children’s Medical Center Chapter; S.M. Wright Foundation, Christmas in the Park Volunteer; North Texas Food Bank Volunteer; and, National Eagle Scout Association Life Member
Past civic service: Flower Mound Transportation Commission; Flower Mound Social Media Committee; Fort Wildflower Naming Committee, Chair; Fort Wildflower Construction Team; LISD Bond Oversight Committee; LISD Council of PTAs Board of Directors; Wellington Elementary PTA Board of Directors; Estates of Park Place HOA, President; Flower Mound Citizen Police Academy, 10th Class; and, Congregation Kol Ami Building Committee
Why voters should elect you: I bring a history of service to the community that gives me a unique perspective on our town. The relationships that I have through service will allow me to bridge our differences.
The main issues facing your town/district and how you would resolve them: There is a lack of focus on what Flower Mound is at its core. We are a community built for and by families. We need to focus on that without all of the strident and divisive rhetoric that is so prevalent now. I will help to achieve this by taking each task and decision before me on its own merits.
Any additional comments: We have an opportunity to make a plan for the future that will set us on the right path for the next phase of our town. As our town matures and moves into build-out, we need to have a plan as good as the one that got us to where we are now.
Address of your candidate Website and/or Facebook Page: www.facebook.com/McDanielForTownCouncil/