Michael Whisenant has announced his candidacy for city alderman in the Nov. 6 election.
“Our city’s infrastructure, economic development, and education will be my priorities as alderman,” he said in making his announcement.
“I will work for a more detailed strategic plan that will serve as a near and long-term guide to ensure proactive solutions to city infrastructure needs,” he continued. “The goal is to plan for replacing aging infrastructure before failure or penalties occur.
“The 2010 U.S. Census revealed that more than 20% of our city’s citizens live below the poverty level. This is alarming and must be addressed with aggressive economic development to create jobs and a continued high-quality education system to prepare our children and grandchildren to perform the jobs of the future.
“I am concerned about the loss of retail business on the downtown square and along the Huntsville Highway business corridor,” said Whisenant. “We need to make a priority of restoring and being proactive in the growth of small business in our community.”
Whisenant has 20 years of experience working in small business management, including owning and operating the Little-Young House Bed and Breakfast from 2001 to 2009. He is employed by G-Squared, a photogrammetry firm located in Fayetteville, as a project and operations manager.
“I understand the value of having small businesses contributing to our local economy through providing jobs and paying the taxes that allow our city to provide the services we want and expect. Fayetteville has a great deal to offer the small business owner, and, if elected, I will work to provide an atmosphere that encourages small businesses to locate and prosper here. To provide this atmosphere, we need a cooperative government and total accountability to our citizens whose taxes pay the bills.
“I am committed to fiscal responsibility,” he continued. “In this economy, we must optimize revenue and control expenses. I will work to restore full funding to non-profit organizations that provide such valuable services for the community.”
Whisenant is one of two people representing Lincoln County in Gattis Leadership class of 2012-2013. The regional Leadership program comprised of six neighboring counties provides him the opportunity to identify Fayetteville’s role in the regional economy and be part of solutions to economic development needs.
The candidate chaired the Citizen’s Advisory Committee which wrote the revised City of Fayetteville Charter that the Board of Mayor and Alderman and the State Legislature adopted in 2011.
“Working with my fellow citizens on this all-volunteer committee was a totally positive experience,” he said. “I would like to see more citizen involvement in our local government. Fayetteville has a diversified, talented group of citizens that are capable of achieving great goals in our community.”
Whisenant and his wife Paula have a 2-year-old son, Andrew, and they are members of the First United Methodist Church.
He is a graduate of Leadership Lincoln, Class of 2002 and served on the Leadership Lincoln Board of Directors from 2002-2005. He is a member of the Chamber of Commerce, a member of ACTION Lincoln County, and is second vice-president of the Fayetteville Lions Club. He graduated cum laude from Samford University in Birmingham with a Bachelors of Science degree in 1991.
“A vote for me is a vote for cooperation, openness, and accountability in city government,” he added. “I respectfully ask for your vote on Nov. 6, and, if elected, pledge to listen to and serve all the citizens of Fayetteville.”