(Shoshoni, WY) – County 10 contacted all the mayoral candidates across the County to ask them a few questions.
Jordan Whitener is running for Shoshoni mayor. He has lived in Shoshoni since 2004, and is the Vice President of Midstream Energy Partners Liquid Petroleum on the Rail Operations side.
Below is a Q&A transcript of our interview, which has been edited for clarity and length.
County 10: What prompted you to run for mayor?
Jordan Whitener: I’m focused on our future. I think there’s no time like the present. I wanted to run because I feel like there is a cloud, if you will, over our local politics. And I think some things are obviously good, but I also know some things are kind of seen as not what’s best for all. The big reason is that I just want to bring a new way of thinking about our town government. The only way to do that is to start putting our community first.
C10: Have you served in a similar role?
JW: I’ve been on some boards and some things. I’ve been actively involved in the city council as it is. I’m sure if anybody goes back and looks at our meetings, anytime there’s been anything important, I’ve been there and definitely voiced my opinion. Obviously, I’m actively involved in the community with various things, you know, the Hot Summer Nights and things like that. I’ve been in that type of role, whether it’s on a board or, you know, maybe not as far as council goes, city council, but I’ve been actively involved over the last six, eight years.
C10: What will you bring to the table as mayor?
JW: I think what I can bring to the table as mayor is a clear mindset and doing what’s best for all. I bring ethics and values. I’m hard working. I’m not one-track-minded. I think often people get in positions and become one-track-minded and think that their ideas are the only idea. That’s where I think the community needs to get involved. It needs to be our community’s idea and do what our community wants. Just because somebody has a vision doesn’t mean that’s always the best vision. If you have the vision, that’s great, but if your community doesn’t want to support it, we also have to recognize our community and what they want, because they’re the ones that elect you.
C10: What changes would you like to see in Shoshoni?
JW: I would like to see, as I said, our community come together more. We’re pretty divided. There’s this side of the fence and that side of the fence, and it shouldn’t be that way. We’re all neighbors, and at the end of the day, we are all family. With that being said, I would like to see a grocery store come in here and some places to eat. I’d like to continue the progress that’s kind of been laid, but I think our infrastructure is the most important piece that I’d like to see us continue to get taken care of.
C10: What challenges do you foresee in making those changes?
JW: I think the challenges are obviously funding and trying to access grant money that the town can utilize based on percentages, so the town’s not fitting the bill for the whole piece. I don’t think anybody in the community would have an issue with that. I would like us to get some more water wells up and going. Without water and sewer, you don’t have a town. Our current water well situation isn’t the greatest, so I think there definitely needs to be some focus there.
C10: What do you believe is the most pressing issue facing the town council this year?
JW: I think the most pressing issue facing the town council is they kind of ran into an issue I’ve noticed with property and things like that. It’s not moving along as fast as it should. People are getting their feelings hurt, and that’s not doing what’s right for our community. When you step in as council or Mayor, it doesn’t matter. You got to put down your religion. You got to put down your personal beliefs, your personal idea, you got to do what’s best. Politics at all levels, you see things happen and then they, you know, get upset because that’s not the way they want to do it. Sometimes they just gotta look at the bigger picture. And I don’t think we’ve been doing that since we’re kind of divided.
C10: What is one thing you wish people knew about Shoshoni?
JW: I think somebody needs to know about Shoshoni we’re growing. We’re improving. We also have a lot of hidden gems. And I think some of the people you’ll find in this town are some of the most giving people. I think Shoshoni is better than the rest of the county and towns as far as anybody that’s here most willingly will give the shirt off their back to help one another. Our county’s that way, but I think our town is even more that way. The difference is other towns probably have a little bit deeper funds to give in certain areas. But our community, if you will, is kind of poverty. But even that being said, I mean, you know, you’re looking at Hot Summer Nights, and I don’t think we have anybody in town not trying to help. Whether it’s advertising or funding, you know, I mean, just the town is willing to come together if the idea is right.
C10: Anything else you wish to share?
JW: Just to vote for me.
Additional questions and answers can be found here on the League of Women Voters Fremont County Primary Election Voter Guide.
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