Sara King appointed to replace Gould on Rochester City Council

By: Mary Beth Almond | Rochester Post | Published February 21, 2024


ROCHESTER — Rochester City Councilman Douglas Gould has resigned from his position.

Gould — who is moving from Rochester to Dallas after accepting a job and is no longer eligible to serve — announced his resignation Jan. 8.

“It represents an incredible opportunity and the next professional challenge in my life, and after much consternation, I have decided to resign from council and take the position. This was not an easy choice. I love this community. … It has been an absolute pleasure to serve the citizens of Rochester,” he said during the meeting.

Rochester City Council members — who formally accepted Gould’s resignation during the meeting — had 60 days to appoint a new council member.

Five residents submitted their names for consideration — Daniel Bachman, David Berletich, Jessica Clauser, Sara King and Ann Peterson — and all were invited to make a presentation during the Feb. 12 council meeting.

King, a JP Morgan Chase relationship manager, was unanimously appointed by council to fill the vacancy.

King said she “was lucky enough” to have been born in Rochester and lived in the city for most of her childhood, only moving away for a couple of years while she attended Michigan State University, graduating with a degree in finance.

Although King started her career in Chicago, she and her husband — who also grew up in Rochester — decided to come back to the city to start their family.

“When I tell people about Rochester and why we moved back home, I always talk about the vibrant downtown that we have, the walkability, everything that there is to do — with the farmers market, the Big, Bright Light Show, the parks, the trailways. I’m a big user of the trailways,” King said. “Our library is awesome. The programming that they do for children, and, I think, for all ages, is just incredible — so we’ve really benefited from that. I think that Rochester is really just a special place, with all it has to offer and the strong sense of community that it has.”

For the past 17 years, King has worked in financial services.

“I’ve had the opportunity to support business owners and help them grow their businesses and invest in their communities by adding access to financial and capital guidance. During this time, I’ve been compelled to give back to the community by supporting the Rochester Area Neighborhood House, cleaning up the trailways, volunteering in the schools, and I’ve had the pleasure of serving on the Planning Commission for the past three and half years.”

Through “diligent research, collaboration and thoughtful consideration” on the Planning Commission, King said she’s “gained a deep understanding of the unique needs of the community.”

“I have been an advocate for maintaining the charm and character of this community, while also supporting responsible development and sustainable practices that will benefit the residents and business of this city. I’ve also supported the city’s ability to protect against failed development by requiring bonding for developers,” she said.

As a Planning Commission member, King feels she’s learned a lot about the operations of the city.

“I feel I’m a strong candidate to fill the vacancy by leveraging my financial background, focus on fiscal responsibility, and my deep appreciation for this community,” she said during her presentation to the City Council. “I welcome the opportunity to collaborate with you as a champion for the residents of this community, uphold the values of transparency and inclusivity, and work tirelessly to ensure Rochester continues to flourish for years to come.”

King was appointed to serve a two-year term.

“Even though (Gould) won a four-year term, this seat is for a two-year term, so it would be up in 2025. We’ll have a normal election in 2025 for four seats, and then we will have a special election for that seat. It’s fairly complicated … but it is up in 2025,” Mayor Stuart Bikson explained.

Rochester City Council meetings are held inside Rochester City Hall, 400 Sixth St., at 7 p.m. on the second and fourth Mondays of every month. For more information, visit