Work history: Retired; founded Wenatchee Office Supply in 1978 and ran it for about 20 years; active duty in Army for two years; Army Reserves for 28 years; worked for Crown Zellerbach for eight years; was finance commissioner for the city of Wenatchee for six years; commercial banker for two years; regional emergency response coordinator Chelan-Douglas Health District for six years.
Experience: Was on Wenatchee City Council for almost four years; has been an East Wenatchee City member for almost four years; is currently on the board of the Emergency Medical Services/Trauma Care Council, the Community Action Council, Link Transit, YMCA and the Dispute Resolution Advisory Board; a member of the Lions Club, Red Cross Disaster Assistance Team, Washington Association of Cities and has served as the Apple Blossom Parade Marshal.
Education: Graduated from Seattle Prep in 1962; earned a bachelor’s degree in business from Seattle University in 1967; worked toward a master’s degree at Seattle University.
Personal: Age, 65; hometown, East Wenatchee
Work History: Self employed since 2006 as a mental health counselor; was administrative assistant for a church for 11 years; owned a business with her husband (the late Ralph Aiken) for eight years in Texas.
Experience: Volunteer on East Wenatchee City Events Board; is on Hospitality House Ministry Board and Misawa Sister City Board; volunteers for her church on small groups leadership team; Confident Kids volunteer.
Education: Graduated from Parkland High School in Winston-Salem, N.C., 1967; earned a bachelor’s degree in psychology from Liberty University, 2004; Earned a master’s of education degree in counseling from Heritage Universtiy in Toppenish, 2006; earned a post-graduate certificate in college teaching from Capella University, 2008.
Personal: Age, 60; hometown, East Wenatchee
EAST WENATCHEE — The recession is on the minds of both candidates running for Position 3 on the East Wenatchee City Council, which carries a four-year term.
“I feel that an important issue in this race is whether or not East Wenatchee can provide the quality of service they have in the past that they can continue to do so in the future, based upon the budgetary constraints that they have right now caused by the recession,” said C. Elaine Aiken, who is challenging incumbent Chuck Johnson.
“The biggest issue in East Wenatchee is lack of funds for transportation infrastructure,” Johnson said.
“Financial viability of the city is also a big concern to me long term,” he added.
On the heels of a new five-year financial plan rolled out by the city, Johnson sees planning as an important part of the future. “I personally would like to see the city of East Wenatchee do a strategic plan for 20 to 25 years out. … What will our population be 20 to 25 years from now? What will our tax base be? How many police officers will we need? How will it look long range?”
“I believe that our future is built upon our past,” Aiken said. “I have a legacy from Ralph, my (late) husband, who was on the City Council for eight years. I’m aware of them (issues) because of him. … He shared his concerns. He shared his thoughts on where he felt the city would go in the future.”
Johnson said he enjoys the time he serves on the City Council. “I like what I do. I’m running because over the 14 years I’ve served in both communities, you have an opportunity to shape policy and you have the opportunity to change something. I find it interesting and challenging. I’m running because I think I’ve done a good job and I want to continue to do so. These are super challenging times right now. I think that you need to look to the future to see where you’ll be 20-25 years from now.”
Aiken sees her past as the key to leadership in the future. “I think I would bring to the City Council a fresh perspective based upon my history in East Wenatchee and my understanding of the quality of life in East Wenatchee. … I have friends and neighbors who have the same issues I do: wanting to have quality service provided to them in the form of public safety and good roads.”
As a City Council member both say communication is key. “The most important responsibility is to come prepared to research the issues that come before a City Council,” Aiken said. “Be aware that we are a city that’s seeking to be a city of leadership but also to be in communication with the cities that are around us.”
“You have to be vocal, you have to be able to express yourself, to me that’s part of the job,” said Johnson. “You have to be open to the community. You need to prepare for the meetings. You need to ask questions. You need to be comfortable that your decisions are the best decisions you can make, based on what you know.”
Rochelle Feil Adamowsky: 664-7153