Dear Editor,

Our city has had a couple of months to familiarize ourselves with the upcoming mayoral and city council elections on April 3rd. When it comes to our next mayor, my wife and I are in support of Bill Baird’s candidacy.

I have lived in Lee’s Summit most of my adult life. My wife and I have raised two children in what we consider to be one of the best places anywhere for our kids to call home. My experiences with this wonderful city have been accentuated through meeting and developing relationships as a pastor, a Financial Planner, a coach for competitive sports, and involvement with many nonprofit organizations. We love Lee’s Summit.

Just like in a family unit, there are times when opportunities present themselves when concerns must be addressed and acted on. Recently, our community has faced these very issues. Similar to the recent lack of integrity with our school district’s superintendent and its board the past several years, and on the heels of our school district issues, our city council and administration has become dysfunctional in leading our city. We have endured a councilman being voted out of office in a recall vote, and just last week, news surfaced questioning the ethics of a former editor and publisher of the Lee’s Summit Journal. The journalist was told he would no longer write for our local paper due to his conflict of interest and financial relationship with a local political action committee (PAC) formed specifically for this upcoming municipal election. Problems we see on a national scale with our politicians, and the media, have now shown their ugliness in our local arena.

Bill Baird is what our city needs at this critical juncture. Our family has seen Bill as a faithful and loving husband and father to his family, a well-respected business owner in our community, a passionate advocate for so many young men and women in their pursuit of a great education, and a spark to fan the flame of students’ gifts in many extra-curricular activities. He has proven his ability to do the right thing as an elected LSR7 School Board member, as the leading voice asking for transparency as our former Superintendent worked the system to benefit himself above what was best for our students and teachers. He brought to light the need for following proper procedures with our school board, demanded healthier processes in spending, and reinforced the need for consistent transparency with our districts’ leaders. This led to an undoubted need for change in leadership for the school district.

Just a short season removed from this difficult time in our community, our city government is struggling with similar transparency issues. Our city is being increasingly run by a few individuals, seemingly the same backers of the above-mentioned PAC. Trust with our city council is lower than it’s been since I have lived here. A lack of support for our local Police and Firefighters from our city leaders is inexcusable and discouraging. Now is the time for a leader to enter the fray who is not a part of the local political machine. If, like me, you want to see a healthy and positive change in our city government, here are your cues to vote for Bill Baird:

• If you are weary of the traditional political norm, Bill is your man.

• If you want a mayor to be the glue between the city council and administration to engage in a more meaningful way in the vision and direction for future projects and programs for Lee’s Summit, Bill is your man.

• If you want someone to lead in capitalizing on Lee’s Summit’s economic strengths and accentuate our community attributes, Bill is your man.

• If you want someone to fight for the livelihoods of the heroes of our community, our Police and Firefighters, Bill is your man.

• If you demand our city administration and council get back to proper policy and decorum for a healthy governance, Bill is your man.

If you want someone who loves our city as you do, is a gifted leader, and who has integrity and strength of character, go to the polls on April 3rd to vote confidently for Bill Baird for Mayor.

Nick Kendall