I usually think of awarding others when I talk about character, having written and presented over 100 character awards to citizens in our community over the past 17 years. As I consider my work as mayor over the last three years, I believe perseverance and creativity have really helped me get the job done. I have a proven record of staying on course to finish the project for the citizens of Holland, no matter what the press or nay-sayers may say. Creativity was critical in leading the Pay-it-forward Holland initiative, in generating and developing the idea of a Labor Day Boardwalk, and yes, in working through the Civic Center remodel. I have been willing to persevere when others said it couldn't be done. I “tied myself to the railroad tracks” to complete the fiscally responsible but still Holland quality renovation of the Civic Center Place. After just two years as mayor, I was honored to cut the ribbon to the finished George and Lucile Heeringa Civic Center, with no new taxes due to 33% of the costs covered by generous donations. We are now using our public feedback models from the BPW energy plant journey and the Civic Center to develop the Waterfront Holland initiative for ALL our citizens. #Letsdothis!