By Matt Smith
Grandview Mayor Brandon Wright announced his resignation, effective Feb. 23, to city council members and residents attending Thursday’s council meeting.
“It is with sadness and excitement that I am writing you this letter of resignation,” Wright said, reading from a prepared statement.
Wright announced his acceptance of a city manager position in Oklahoma, an opportunity Wright called a “dream come true.”
Wright declined to name his new city of employment when reached for comment Friday. He said he fell in love with public service after serving on Grandview’s Volunteer Fire Department, the city’s 4B Economic Development Corp. board and city council, and while serving as mayor. Wright said he has long wanted to serve as a city manager.
“The town is near our family farm, and we were home at Christmas when I saw the listing for the job,” Wright said. “I thought, ‘Why not?’ It was a chance to do something I love to support my family.”
His wife, Stacey, was offered a job as the head teller at a bank in the city.
Wright and his family moved to Grandview in 1996. He worked as an engineering technician until recently. Wright won his first term as mayor in 2005.
“I’m sad but excited,” Wright said. “I love Grandview and it will always be near and dear to my heart. Without the opportunity the people in Grandview gave me, I would never have had this opportunity.”
Wright said he learned he got the job Tuesday. He said he didn’t want to tell council members and city staff until he knew for sure.
Mayor Pro Tem Linda Moore agreed to serve as acting mayor until after the May 12 elections, he said. Wright said he has total confidence Moore will do “an excellent job.”
Wright’s, Moore’s and Councilman Simon Reyna’s seats are up for election in that race. As of early Friday afternoon, no one had yet filed for any of the offices.
Wright said he is sure he will visit Grandview again: His father still lives near the town.
Councilwoman Barbara LeBaron said she was surprised by Thursday’s news but happy for Wright.
“It’s Grandview’s loss but absolutely an excellent opportunity for Brandon,” LeBaron said. “What an adventure for him and his family. He’s great at [public service] and spends so many hours up here. I’m glad he’ll finally be getting paid for it.”
The council also approved a measure to lease voting machines from Johnson County for the city’s May 12 election and discussed progress on the city-park project. Administrative Assistant Sherry Bagwell said the work continues and officials believe the project should complete about March 1.
Matt Smith can be reached at 817-645-2441, ext. 2339, or email@example.com.