A Mayor’s Farewell
A letter to the community from Friday Harbor Mayor Farhad Ghatan…
As I reflect on my past eight years working for this council and the Town I so dearly love, I am filled with gratitude for those who have seen fit to allow me to represent their interests as well as those who have made this journey such a pleasure. My thanks go out to our loyal and devoted employees who see our ideas, plans and policies to fruition.
Our public works department is always willing to make improvements that affect our daily lives. From creating one of the State’s top water systems to award winning improvements to streets, sidewalks and parks, as well as managing a complex sewer, stormwater and refuse system, the crew never gets enough appreciation for their efforts.
Town administration has always been such a pleasure to work with. Our finance department has kept us in compliance with state and federal regulators and more importantly, in the black through downturns and other fiscal challenges. Our community development and planning department has risen to new challenges and are working to bring in an era of modernity to all aspects of their realm. We have been so fortunate to have a systems administrator who continually brings us ideas on improving our data security, electronics and a host of systems upgrades that will keep us ahead in this ever changing world, and then builds, installs and programs them himself.
Special thanks goes to the Town clerk Amy Taylor who makes sure the Mayor is well prepared for meetings but also makes sure the Mayor is doing his job correctly. Her grasp of government function is comprehensive and impressive.
And then there’s the 10 million dollar man, Duncan Wilson…
…our dedicated administrator, who has made so much of this magic happen for the Town. His creativity, commitment and persuasive nature have been a boon to us all and I am so grateful to have been able to work with him and this Dream Council, with credit for that title going to Howie Rosenfeld. His assistant, Julie Greene, has been critical to coordination, research and many behind the scenes efforts.
Our council’s thoughtfulness, careful deliberations and strong commitment to doing what is right for the community have made my job easy. I still remember past councils with their individual special interests and the dysfunction that accompanied each meeting. You have risen above that and I am content in knowing this legacy will continue to flourish under my successor. There is still a lot of unfinished business that we have been working on together and I hope you will find the support and enthusiasm you had from Duncan and myself in your new Mayor and administrator.
I began working with the Town in the mid 90’s as a volunteer, appointed to the planning commission. It was at this level that I grew to appreciate serving my community. To all of the volunteers that make up our various commissions, Planning, Historic Preservation and Arts, a sincere thank you for your hours of committed work to further improve the quality of life for our residents. Without public involvement government tends to drift. I believe much of the success of our community is due to the fact that the real people of consequence have become involved. To you, my deepest appreciation.