Vacancy filled: Chris Molin to take seat on Stayton City Council

January, 2018 Posted in Community

By Mary OwenIMG_0104

Mayor Hank Porter and the Stayton City Council have chosen Chris Molin to fill the position vacated by Jennifer Neigel.

Neigel, who joined the council in February 2015, retired from the council after moving out of the city limits.

“It has been a long process,” Mayor Porter said. “We’re not going to seat Mr. Molin until the 16th of January.”

Of Molin, Porter added, “I think he’ll do well. The term he is filling ends in 2020, so he’ll have a couple of years to make his mark.”

Molin hails from the small rural town of Belmont in Southwestern New York. The town is surrounded by dairy farms and corn fields. After a few years of college, he joined the U.S. Air Force in 1991 and served two enlistments as a Communications Computer Systems Journeyman at Los Angeles Air Force Base and Misawa AB in Japan. In 1998, he took a position as a contractor with Science Applications International Corporation working for the Department of Defense.

“I worked with them for 14 years, spending time in Japan, Korea, Washington, D.C., and Battle Creek, Mich.,” Molin said. “I was selected for
an operations manager position with
the Oregon Secretary of State in 2012 and because the chief information officer in 2014.”

In April of this year, Molin transferred to the Oregon State Treasury as its IT director.

“My wife and I looked all over the Willamette Valley and Santiam Canyon to find a home, but it was Stayton that grabbed our attention,” he said. “We fell in love with this town and bought a house here in 2013.”

Molin’s wife, Letxy (the “t” is silent), is a native Oregonian from Roseburg. The couple has two boys, ages 7 and 9, and a dog, Charlie.

“My daughter is a senior, majoring in music at Eastern Michigan University,” Molin said.

His decision to plant roots and raise his family in Stayton motivated Molin to contribute toward “keeping Stayton amazing.” He decided to apply for the open council seat to look for opportunities where he can best represent the city council and local residents.

“I’m sure every other candidate is just as passionate as me and cares a lot about this city,” he said of fellow applicants. “I know it was a tough decision, and went right up to the wire. I hope my experience and perspective will help add to the great work the city is already doing. I’m very committed to serving Stayton to the best of my ability, and I’ll work hard for the other candidates and this city.”

Having worked in federal and state government, Molin knows there will be a learning curve at the city level. He recently met with the city attorney, administrator and recorder to better understand his new role.

“It was almost 2.5 hours long and seriously intense!” he said of the orientation. “The city attorney did a great job of scaring me thoroughly about conflicts of interest, ethics issues, and the importance of transparency. He hammered me pretty good with a ton of information. The City Administrator Keith Campbell finally stepped in and said, ‘I think he’s had enough. We’d better stop before his head explodes. I think I’m going to like Keith. In fact, everyone at City Hall has been gracious, helpful, and patient.”

Molin thanks Mayor Porter and members of the city council for their “trust and selection.”

“There’s a sense of community and threads of commonality that unite this town,” Molin said. “Serving on the city council would give me the opportunity
to utilize my experience and contribute to the quality of life, economic development, and critical decisions with Stayton’s public safety, land-use planning, and parks
and recreation.

“I know I have a lot to learn, and I’m really excited to get started,” he added.

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