Five seek appointment to Boone Town Council
by Anna Oakes
A fifth Boone resident applied for appointment to an open seat on the Boone Town Council on Friday -- the deadline to submit an application, resume and cover letter to the town clerk.
Bryan P. Martin of Overlook Drive joined Diane Blanks, Fred Hay, Jesse McNiel and Virginia Roseman as an applicant for the seat to be vacated by Boone Mayor-elect Andy Ball, who has two years remaining in his council term.
Martin, who is registered unaffiliated, is an attorney with the law firm Deal, Moseley & Smith and a member of the Two Rivers Community School board of directors.
"My commitment is to the betterment of this community, without bias, ego or agenda," Martin wrote. "I hope you will consider me as somebody without any preconceived certainties as to what is best for the town of Boone."
McNiel, of Farthing Street, holds a bachelor of fine arts degree in technical production and is currently a driver for Watauga County Habitat for Humanity. He is an alternate member of the Boone Board of Adjustment.
McNiel said he wants to serve on the town council "to help and assist the people of Boone and Watauga County" and that "compromise is only possible if we all work together." McNiel is registered unaffiliated.
Roseman, of Cherrybrook Lane, is employed by Wahoo's Adventures and High Country Marketing Services and has spent nearly 10 years in the tourism industry following work with the U.S. Census Bureau. Roseman has served on the Boone Board of Adjustment and Tourism Development Authority since September 2011 and in 2012 lost a race for a seat on the Watauga County Board of Commissioners. Roseman is a registered Democrat.
"I always try very hard to picture myself in others' shoes and see things from other points of view," Roseman said.
Hay, a registered Democrat and resident of Eastview Drive, said he wants "to help ensure that council's progressive agenda will continue."
Hay is a professor of Appalachian studies and librarian of the W.L. Eury Appalachian Collection at Appalachian State University, where he has been employed since 1994. He has served on the Boone Board of Adjustment for 14 years and also served on the town's Howard's Knob Task Force.
Blanks, of Green Street, has a background in public relations and fundraising, according to her resume. Blanks is a member of the Watauga County Public Library Endowment Board, Junaluska Heritage Association and Boone Historic Preservation Commission.
Blanks said she feels a commitment to the community and wants to provide a voice for small stakeholders, including local residents, senior citizens, individual homeowners, the Junaluska community and others. Blanks is a registered Democrat.
Newly elected council members Jennifer Pena and Quint David and re-elected Councilman Rennie Brantz will join Councilwoman Lynne Mason in voting on the council appointee after being sworn in at the Dec. 17 meeting.
Ball said the appointee will be sworn in immediately following the council's vote at the Dec. 17 meeting.