The Claremore City Council approved Monday the appointement of local business owner Brian Callender as the new Ward II councilor to replace Thomas Cypert.
Three other candidates sought the position including former Claremore City Communications Director Cassie Woods, former city councilor Dwayne Caldwell and Stephanie Freeman.
Callender owns Heat Wave Tanning in Claremore and serves on the executive board for the Claremore Chamber of Commerce.
His family has lived in the community for about 20 years and he has three children, all attending Claremore Public Schools.
Callender, like many of the candidates, is looking to see Oklahoma Plaza finished, as well as, the city’s water plant and electrical systems repaired.
“The main reason why I would like to be involved is that I want to make a difference,” Callender said. “I have heard a lot of complaining and I can’t see complaining about things unless you are willing to step forward and take action.”
Callender won the seat by a 5-3 vote and was the first candidate to be nominated for the opening after the council conducted interviews in open session. Callender spoke candidly about his support of the new direction of city policy, however adding that he will not have an issue speaking out when necessary.
“I think we are heading in the right direction and I would support anything this man [City Manager Jim Thomas] would bring forward,” Callender said.
“We are fortunate to have four citizens that are willing to serve,” said Councilor Bill Flanagan.
“I would be proud to serve with any of the four candidates,” said councilor Mark Lepak. Callender will begin his term after being officially sworn in at the next council meeting on Aug. 5.