Thursday, October 30, 2014

City taps Dickinson for vacant city seat

By DOUG CARDER, Herald Senior Writer | 5/6/2013

In the end, youth won over experience.

Ottawa city commissioners voted 3-1 Monday night to appoint Shawn Dickinson, 30, Ottawa, to fill Jeff Richards’ two-year term on the commission. Richards resigned April 17 after being appointed Franklin County sheriff April 10.

In the end, youth won over experience.

Ottawa city commissioners voted 3-1 Monday night to appoint Shawn Dickinson, 30, Ottawa, to fill Jeff Richards’ two-year term on the commission. Richards resigned April 17 after being appointed Franklin County sheriff April 10.

Mayor Sara Caylor and commissioners Linda Reed and Mike Skidmore voted for Dickinson. The three commissioners agreed Dickinson would represent a younger segment of the Ottawa population that has not had a frequent voice on the commission in the past.

Caylor and Reed both mentioned that Dickinson talked about being able to bring a different perspective to the board, and Skidmore said he could tell Dickinson was hungry to serve in the position.

Dickinson beat out finalist Gary Jordan, an Ottawa attorney, who has more board and budgeting experience.

Blake Jorgensen, city commissioner, cast the dissenting vote.

Jorgensen said he thought Jordan’s experience with budgeting and serving on numerous boards in the community would make him a better fit for the position — especially as the board heads into budgeting season.

Jorgensen suggested asking Dickinson to apply for one of the two openings on the planning commission to gain more experience, as a compromise.

An Ottawa native, Dickinson is a graduate of Ottawa High School and is self-employed as a free-lance writer. He is expected to be sworn in May 15.

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