This essay is to congratulate Jim Yarbrough for his election to the position of Mayor of Galveston; and to congratulate the voters for choosing him over two qualified opponents.
In previous commentaries, I have said that I think that Yarbrough proved himself to be an excellent public administrator during his tenure as Galveston County Judge.
Of course, the job of mayor is far different from the duties of a county judge. A county judge is the chief executive officer of the county; and Galveston is a council-manager form of government which limits the mayor to primarily ceremonial responsibilities. However, in Texas, mayors have special powers during emergencies; and the position certainly provides a bully pulpit. The mayor must be able to advocate for the city on the regional, state, national and international stages.
Yarbrough has a proven talent for building consensus among elected officials with diverse interests to accomplish major achievements, not only in county government but previously as a Galveston Independent School District trustee.
The majority of the newly elected city council is new. Dr. Craig Brown, Ralph McMorris and Carolyn Sunseri, all seasoned community leaders, will join Norman Pappous and Terrilyn Tarlton who were first elected two years ago. Council Member Cornelia Harris Banks or former council member Tarris Woods will fill the seventh seat, depending on the results of the runoff. They both are city hall veterans.
Saturday's election will become official on May 19 when the current city council canvasses the votes; and the newly elected council members will take their seats.
I look forward to covering the new city council.