I am Teresa Scenters. The priorities in my life are my Christian faith, my family, and being of service to others. My husband, Tex, and I live on a farm in Berea, near the Pinnacles.
We have two sons and daughters in law, Mark and Debra who are both educators in Madison County, and Adam, a farmer, and Kelsey, an RN at Saint Joseph Berea Hospital. Our grandchildren are Canon, Caleb, Carly, and Jenna. I recently retired from a long and rewarding career as Publisher of the Berea Citizen.
My years at the newspaper, where I followed all aspects of local government, have given me a unique insight into the inner workings of Berea City Council. I have also served on various boards and committees including several terms on the Boards of Directors of the Kentucky Press Association and the Berea Chamber of Commerce, where I was elected President in 2018. I look forward to serving my hometown in a new way by representing the citizens as a member of the Berea City Council.
Why are you running for Berea City Council?
If the voters give me the opportunity, this will be my first term. As a lifetime resident of the area I love Berea. Our family has deep roots here, going back seven generations, to a time well before the city was incorporated. This community has always been a special place. I want to do my part to keep it financially strong and thriving.
What is the single biggest issue facing Berea and what is your solution to that issue?
Singling out one issue is difficult, but our water supply is certainly near, if not, the top, priority.
I would support every means at the city’s disposal to continue the upgrades at the Owsley Fork Reservoir. Making sure our police department is fully staffed and well compensated is another important issue. I would also work to put an end to the divisiveness of the past several years. In order to have a city government that works well for all, we need to find common ground.
What is the role of the city government?
The role of city government is to provide basic services and infrastructure for the safety and security of the citizenry; best accomplished by maintaining and expanding the economy in order to grow the tax base, so that the city is also able to offer quality of life programs such as the parks department. Another important function is creating a positive work environment for employees, especially first responders. I believe we need to find a way to work within the budget to do what it takes to recruit and retain the best candidates.
What can be done to attract more businesses to Berea?
The first step to attracting more businesses has been taken, in the hiring of an exceptionally competent Economic Development Director. Donna Angel is doing good things already. As a member of the council I would cultivate relationships with those people in local, state, and national positions, who have the ability help us help Berea.
What is the most underrated thing about Berea and what would you do to make sure it becomes the most noted thing the city has to offer?
Opportunity is the most underrated thing about Berea. Whether it’s the opportunity for homebuyers to find quality affordable housing, or the opportunity created by the need for retailers, such as grocers, clothing, or building supplies, and even tourism opportunities, where visitors are looking for more than what Berea has historically offered. Adventure and Agri-tourism both come to mind; in addition to and not at the exclusion of our trademark arts and craft. Promoting all that opportunity should be done in a broad range of ways, from simple word-of-mouth, to traditional print and broadcast, to the many avenues of the Internet and social media.