HAWTHORNE – Less than a month ago the city of Hawthorne lost a member of the community with the passing of Eleanor “Kit” Randall. Randall left behind not only friends and family, but a city commission seat as well. On Wednesday, Sept. 4, the commission filled that seat.
At the city commission meeting last week, the commission reviewed three candidates for the position and chose Patricia Bouie to hold seat four on the commission. Normally, city commissioners are elected. Because the commission was filling a seat vacated by someone’s death, the position was appointed instead.
Bouie has served on the commission before, completing a two-year term ending about four years ago.
Prior to her time as a city commissioner, Bouie worked as a board member on the planning and zoning committee in Hawthorne. Due to her past involvement with the city, the transition to being a commissioner once again should be easier, said Ellen Vause, Hawthorne city manager.
“We are fortunate to have her as the appointment to fill Commissioner Randall’s seat,” Vause said.
Filling the seat, not replacing Randall, is precisely what Hawthorne Mayor Matthew Surrency wants Bouie to try to do as well.
“I expect her to stay true to who she is and to do what she can do,” Surrency said. “Pat will do her own thinking and act on what she believes is right, she knows you can’t replace Kit.”
Bouie is also involved with her church, which helps her to stay plugged in to her community, Surrency said. She was a part of the process in the past and it will allow her to have an impact immediately.
Commissioner Randall served on the commission for several years over the course of two separate terms. She also acted as Hawthorne’s mayor for a number of years before Surrency took office. She then worked alongside him as a commissioner.
Surrency went to school with both Commissioner Bouie’s children and with the late Commissioner Randall’s children. He said he has always believed that having people in a leadership role that are familiar with each other can make progress easier.
“Serving with people you know is what makes this community great,” Surrency said. “I’ve known Mrs. Bouie for quite a while, and I know she will be right for the job.”
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