Three people running for Molalla City Council seats
Taking on the theme of this November's elections, women are ones running for the three open seats on the Molalla City Council. Elizabeth Klein, current president of the council; Leota Childress, a current member of the council; and Terry Shankle, former president of Molalla's Chamber of Commerce, have sent in and been certified for the November 2018 election, according to Kelly Richardson, city recorder.
Childress was appointed to the City Council two and a half years ago. She is running to keep her seat because, she said, "I love Molalla and want to be part of what it will become with a lively, thriving downtown area that will serve the local area, attract visitors and encourage economic development."
Her vision includes street maintenance, a new wastewater treatment plant, the community visioning project—of which she's been the co-coordinator for the past couple of years as well as downtown revitalization and beautification. She's hoping to find funding sources for street repair and advocates a street maintenance fee. "I am ready to take on the tough work that comes with repairing and rebuilding outdated infrastructure," she said.
Her background is in accounting, customer service and bank operations. She spent 13 years as an accountant with a private accounting firm where she also worked on income tax planning and preparation for clients. She also worked in national banking, managing a staff of 45 people in an ATM department. Her experience prepared her for budgeting and spending.
Since 2005 she's volunteered in the city by helping paint houses on Molalla Clean-Up Day, participated in the Ford Institute Leadership program, helped produce the pole banners hanging throughout town, is a member of the Ford Institute for Community Building, is part of the Molalla Heritage Art Walk Committee, Director of the Molalla Warming Center and the Event Planner for Celebrate Molalla.
Klein currently is the president of the City Council and a co-project manager with Childress for Molalla's Visioning Project. She's lived in Molalla since 2006, and both of her daughters graduated from Molalla High School. She's lived on a 20-acre Christmas tree farm and within the city limits. Her schooling includes a Bachelor of Science degree in business administration from Warner Pacific College.
Klein currently works as executive director for the Congress of Chiropractic State Associations. She also served as associate director of the Clackamas County Arts Alliance and has been a volunteer for local service organizations, because she "believes in giving back to the community."
"I am running for city council because I love this community and know that engaging at the local level provides a real ability to make positive things happen for those who live, work and play here." She hopes to continue with the visioning project to provide an opportunity where the community can develop value statements about Molalla, create an action plan and move projects forward. "This type of intentional planning will help carry us into the future with a focus toward providing what the community wants and needs in an effort to ensure a high quality of life."
Terry Shankle has been a Molalla resident for more than 48 years and is the former co-owner of Clinkscales Portable Toilets, where she worked full time for more than 26 years and from which she is now semi-retired. She came to Molalla at the age 11, and she is one of the few Molalla business owners that actually lives within the city limits.
"Molalla is a community that cares," she said. "If someone is hurting or in trouble the community takes over and helps. I don't want to see that feeling lost because the city is growing. People here always step up when volunteers are needed. We need growth but I don't want to lose that small community feeling," she told the Pioneer.
Shankle is concerned about the state of Molalla's roads and wants to see them improved. At the same time she's concerned about the money," it has to be used well, I hate seeing money wasted." She said. At the same time she notes that "it's important for the city to be friendly so that businesses want to come here. That's what I want to work toward."
Her list of activities is mind boggling. She's been a long-term member of the Chamber of Commerce, she was treasurer and then president and now she's treasurer again. She was director of The Giant Street Parade for seven years and has been a volunteer for about 12 years. She's coached cheerleading and dance team for Molalla River District's high and middle schools and is still active in high school dancing as a judge. She worked on the Molalla River School Districts citizens and district budget committee as an advisor. She's currently co-chair of the city's Christmas tree lighting and decorations.
Prior to Clinkscales, she worked as a travel agent for 13 years, becoming a manager and bookkeeper for the business. She attended Clackamas Community College where she took various business classes, especially accounting.