The Mount Pleasant City Commission will be headed by two women who have many years of local government experience under their belts.
At Monday’s meeting, Kathy Ling was selected as the new mayor, and Sharon Tilmann was chosen as the vice mayor for 2013.
Ling was elected in a 6-1 vote by commissioners with Commissioner Jon Joslin being the lone dissenting vote. Tilmann was elected unanimously.
“I’m honored the commission elected me as mayor, and I’m looking forward to serving as Mount Pleasant’s mayor,” Ling said.
Ling is going into her sixth year on the commission, having originally joined in January 2008.
Having served as the vice mayor last year, Ling said she was not surprised to hear her name called when it came time for nominations.
“It doesn’t always happen that way, but I was hoping that I would be elected mayor, and I’m very pleased that I was,” Ling said.
A retired government teacher, Ling enjoys being involved in local government. She has also previously served on the Isabella County Commission.
“I think that local government is the place where you can feel you have an impact,” Ling said. “You can talk to people directly; you can see the changes occur.”
Tilmann was appointed to the commission in 1995 and served until 2001. She served as mayor and vice mayor in that time span. From 2001 to 2004, Tilmann was on the county commission and served as the vice chair.
She returned to the city commission in 2009 after a break from local government.
Before the start of the meeting, Commissioners Joslin, Rick Rautanen and Matthew Sous all took an oath of office.
Sous is newly elected to the commission, while Joslin and Rautanen are returning commissioners.
Overall, Sous said he is continuing to learn the ropes but thought his first meeting as a commissioner went well.
As the year progresses, Sous said he is excited to work on issues important to him, such as recycling.
“Right now, every resident, house, in the city has a recycling box in front of it, but that’s not necessarily true for all of our apartments,” he said. “I would like to change that, because I feel like tenants and our students would like to recycle just as much as our residents.”
Commissioners also voted to have the commission continue to meet at 7 p.m. on the second and fourth Monday of each month.