Northwood Councilman Dave Gallaher, who is not seeking re-election in November after nearly 20 years on council, said goodbye to his colleagues at an Oct. 24 meeting.
“This will be my last meeting,” said Gallaher, who has been on council since 1994. “I turned my resignation in to the mayor and council president. There’s not going to be any projects started and I don’t have anything to finish, so I will be stepping down. With the election right around the corner, I’m sure you won’t have a hard time filling this seat. Although it’s been bumpy at times, it’s been a real pleasure to work with everyone. It’s an honor. I appreciate that.”
Mayor Mark Stoner, whom Gallaher tried unsuccessfully to unseat in three mayor’s races (2003, 2007 and 2011), said he held no grudges with his long time nemesis, even though they were frequently at odds with each other over a variety of issues.
“We’ve had our ups and downs, but we’ve persevered throughout, and I think the city’s in a better place,” said Stoner. “We’ve had our sparring matches, but I think that kind of motivated us and put us in the right direction. On behalf of the city and the residents of Northwood, thank you for your time. It was well served here. You will be missed. I’m sure you won’t be a stranger.”
Council President Connie Hughes agreed.
“We might not always agree, but still we’re friends. In the last 20 years, we’ve had the same goal in mind: The City of Northwood,” said Hughes.
As the meeting came to a close, Gallaher wanted to address one more concern before calling it a day.
“I really think we need to change the name of Central Park. Central Park doesn’t mean anything to the city of Northwood. Someone who has really done a lot for the city is George Dalling,” he said of the city’s first mayor elected in 1962 and who served until 1979. “I’m going to leave you all with that and whatever you guys decide will be fine. I really think George Dalling did a lot for the city. There’s a lot of people who really have no idea who he is. So it would be a nice way of remembering him and keeping his name around and hopefully, in 50 years, someone will say, “Who is that park named after and why?’”
Gallaher said last month that he decided not to run for re-election so he can spend more time with his family.
Five candidates vying for four seats on Northwood council on Tuesday are Council members Hughes and Randy Kozina, and challengers Keith A. Dempsey, Louis Fahrbach, and Richard B. Radocy.