CMU students win City Commission seats
Central Michigan University students won the two contested seats for Mount Pleasant City Commission Tuesday night.
Following their victories, Grad student Kristin LaLonde and senior William Joseph will serve three-year terms starting Jan. 1.
They beat four other candidates for the positions and will replace commissioners Jim Holton and Mike Verleger.
LaLonde is a CMU graduate student, a health sciences librarian at Mid-Michigan Health and a member of the Isabella County Human Rights Committee.
LaLonde describes herself as a problem solver who wants to improve the walkability of Mount Pleasant and work to clean the Chippewa River. She said a city commissioner has the opportunity to unite people who are often working toward a common goal.
"I was pretty surprised," she said. "As soon as the numbers came in I said 'what's happening?'"
She thanked the College Democrats at Central Michigan University and the registered student organization's president Ethan Petzold for supporting her campaign.
She's looking forward to working with other city commissioners to improve Mount Pleasant, and said she wants to build bridges among the city, university and surrounding communities.
"I hate when people are doing the same things but don't work together," LaLonde said. "Having two students on the commission is going to help bring everyone together, and I also know many of the commissioners and people in the community and can't wait to get started."
Joseph is a CMU student, a former Student Government Association member and a current member of the Planning Commission.
Joseph enjoys the job of local government. He’s served on various committees at CMU and said he wants to expand Mount Pleasant’s recycling program, ensure the stability of local infrastructure and bring residents and students together.
"I look forward to meeting with other commissioners and seeing what we can get done," Joseph said. "Every elected official's goal is to get things done. A lot of the real work is done behind the scenes and I think I can do it."
He added that he has strong ties with members of SGA and will work with President Anna Owens to collaborate with students on important issues.
MT. PLEASANT CITY COMMISSIONER RESULTS
- Kristin LaLonde 651
- Will Joseph 398
- Rick Rautanen 382
- Amy Perschbache 368
- Damian S. Fisher 301
- Marni Taylor 151
- Write-in 5