It’s that time of year again … footballs are flying, marching bands are playing and politicians are going door-to-door asking for your help to get on the ballot and into office.

It’s election season.

And, yes, I’m going to be filing my paperwork today (Wednesday, September 18) to stand for re-election as mayor of Riverdale. If no one else files, I’ll be running unopposed and will be serving through the end of 2021.

I’m happy to do it. But I have a few concerns.

I’m concerned that by the end of that second term, there may be no one interested in running for mayor. Honestly, I don’t see myself doing it again as my workload outside of elected office continues to increase. It looks like I’ll be doing more traveling and more business outside the Quad Cities.

So, even though I’m happy to clear the decks and serve our community for a second term, I’m also going to be on the lookout for interested and engaged citizens who are willing to step in and play a more active part in Riverdale’s future.

It’s important that we have more people interested in our community’s future and how we can move ahead. It’s important that we have multiple points-of-view – because ideas are better and solutions are more effective when they are crafted in a way that reflects a diversity of opinion. Sure, sometimes it makes the conversations a little heated – but that kind of conflict (collegial, genuine and respectful) tempers ideas and makes them stronger.

And it takes many voices to make that happen.

I’m more than happy to help start those conversations, but Riverdale needs everyone to feel like they have an opportunity to lend an idea and a hand when it comes to making those dreams into realities.

So, where do we start?

The Iowa League of Cities has a fun program designed to get 7th graders interested in their cities’ governments. The League’s If I Were Mayor essay contest offers scholarships for winning essays – up to $500 if your child’s essay is selected as the best in Iowa. Entries are due by December 6th. You can get the details here.

I’m also offering to run a similar contest for all kids between the ages of 12 and 18. I can’t afford scholarships, but I can afford Whitey’s Gift Certificates. Any Riverdale resident (or grandchild of a Riverdale resident) between the ages of twelve and eighteen can submit an essay of up to 250 words via our website. If we publish the essay on the website, I’ll send the winner a $5 Whitey’s gift card as a thank you.

Tell me what you’d do if you were the Mayor of Riverdale and why by using the form below.  All entries are due by December 6, 2019.

I look forward to sharing some of the results with our community.

Please provide your street address so we can confirm you're a Riverdale resident (or the grandchild of a Riverdale resident).
Please provide an email address we can use to contact you or your parent/guardian/grandparent if we have questions.
In 250 words or less, let us know what you would do if you were the mayor of Riverdale, Iowa.



  1. Judy Hiles

    What a great idea. Hope you get some young residents to do this!

    • Editor

      I hope so, too.