Jeff Genung didn't want to take anything for granted and had an election team assembled, website launched, and was ready to fight for the position.
That's no longer necessary after no one stepped forward to oppose him on nomination day, Sept. 20.
"I've been on pins and needles for a month," he says. "Today was even more amplified, just wondering if someone would at the last minute put their name in and challenge the role of mayor. As it turns out, no go, and here I sit."
"The competitive nature in me wanted to campaign and I really wanted to go out there and fight for it, but on the other hand, I'm taking this as a vote of confidence that people are happy with the job that I'm doing overall. I'm just grateful for the confidence and support I've been hearing all across the community today."
He's eager to continue the work started in his first term, and believes a change of leadership at this time could have impacted major projects on the go, like the Hwy 1A improvements. He says the first term was about building relationships within the community and with other leaders and he quickly realized he would seek a second term to continue his work.
But that's not his only priority.
"I think the one thing that's emerging to me that needs to be in the lead is bringing people together. COVID has been difficult, it's been a different story for everybody, it's been unique, but the one thing that we all have in common is it has been polarizing."
"Even today, navigating through what the restrictions/exemption program means, vaccine passports, etc., etc., so it has been very divisive. I'm going to lead this next group and the community in a time of bringing people together, rather than pushing people apart."
Turning to the election for town councillors, he's excited to see so many interested in municipal politics, and believe COVID has magnified politics for both good and bad.
"I think that just speaks to the fact of people want a voice, and want to be a part of it."
He says he's going to be paying close attention to how the election unfolds and, like other Cochranites, will be attending forums to gain a better understanding of his future team the community will be electing.
"I'm certainly don't want to get actively involved and meddle with anything, but I certainly going to be playing a role in listening and educating my own vote come Oct. 18th."