Lake Forest Park Councilman Fiene says that eight years is enough

Saturday, May 25, 2013

Don Fiene will not seek a third term
on the Lake Forest Park City Council
By Evan Smith

Lake Forest Park City Councilman Don Fiene, who has decided against seeking a third four-year term on the Council, said recently that his decision came from an exit strategy that he had borrowed from his predecessor.

Fiene, fellow two-term Council member Sandy Koppenol and one-term Councilman Bob Lee have not filed for re-election.

Two candidates are running for each of the three positions. Fiene has endorsed one candidate for each.

One-term Councilman John Wright is running for re-election without opposition.  

Fiene said that he has varied reasons for not running.

He said that when he first ran for City Council, it was for a seat vacated by Roger Olstad who had said that in a small city, eight years of service is probably enough. 
“I thought that this statement might be sage advice,” he said. “I also feel that in volunteering for service one should have an exit plan at the outset.

“Looking back, I have had the opportunity to work with many excellent elected individuals as well as with many gifted city and regional staff; I shall miss those associations. I feel very positive about my legislative accomplishments in serving both the citizens of Lake Forest Park and about my representation of LFP’s interests to regional forums.

"Today, I more fully understand Roger’s comment. In a smaller city, such as Lake Forest Park, serving for eight years allows enough time to ‘learn the job’ and to become effective in understanding and representing citizens’ interests and concerns in the development of legislation, and in problem solving. After eight years, it is time to step aside to allow new thoughts, energy and perspective to enter the process of government. This also seems best for all of our citizens. Institutions and organizations become stale when there is little change within their ranks.

“Rather than being concerned that three two-term council members are leaving the LFP Council this year, our citizens should be excited about the three very capable and energetic candidates, John Resha, Mark Phillips and Hilda Thompson who have come forward to run for the new council. 
Each of these candidates is knowledgeable about the issues of Lake Forest Park, has a solid background in volunteerism, and will bring new energy and perspective to the governance of LFP. It is very rewarding to see candidates of this caliber volunteer to fill this responsibility of governance.”


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