Elected officials share their New Year’s resolutions

By: Mike Koury | Woodward Talk | Published January 8, 2018

OAKLAND COUNTY — A new year brings about a new set of resolutions that people will try to achieve.

The Woodward Talk reached out to several council members and commissioners to hear what New Year’s resolutions they have set for 2018.

Ferndale Mayor Dave Coulter said he’d like to try and read more, because it often gets pushed to the back of the list of things to do.

He said the reading is both for pleasure and professional, as he wants to search for material to read up on that will help his community be more successful and help him to be a better mayor.

“I’m a big believer in not reinventing the wheel,” he said. “I like to read about what other cities and states are doing. And in particular, given the new political climate in Washington, I have a particular interest in how local communities can respond in a progressive way.”

This includes resolutions that Ferndale has passed pertaining to global warming, the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program and the Welcoming Cities initiative.

Coulter said he wants to look for ways that local communities can play a role in making sure  issues important to progressives, like himself, continue to be heard.

“I’m just very curious as to what other cities are doing and what might make sense for us to do here,” he said.

Newly appointed Berkley City Councilman Ross Gavin said he would also like to read more, though he doesn’t expect that to happen too much, but he also set a goal to make sure he’s “a thoughtful, thorough and honest public servant.”

“On the professional side of that, the council side of that, that’s really what I want to make sure I’m focused on,” he said.

The biggest goal Gavin set, though, is that he wants to take his 1-year-old son, Isaac, to at least one game for every Detroit professional sports team.

“He’s really young. He’s only a year and a half, but I know those are some really great memories for me and my dad growing up,” Gavin said.

“You can never start being a Detroit sports fan too early.”

Huntington Woods Commissioner Allison Iversen said she wants to focus on adhering to one of the more challenging commandments: Love thy neighbor. 

“I’ve been thinking about this to the end of 2017, and it really has carried over into thinking about this upcoming year,” she said. “It’s so easy to love people who are similar to us, and basically to think that we love people, but I’d really like to explore what it means to truly love thy neighbor through all of the differences and opinions, views, and what that looks like actually in action.”

Iversen said she is trying to figure out now how to do that, though being slow to judge others is something that came to mind, and viewing them as more than just what we see.

“We’re only called to love one another, and that would be just such a wonderful thing to see: love in action around the world,” she said. “I can only effect change with myself. I can do this, and hopefully that will inspire others by seeing what that can mean for our area.”