When Oakmont Councilwoman Kitty Vagley first got the phone call asking her to consider running for council, she had just finished David McCullough’s book, John Adams.
“John Adams repeatedly told his son, ‘If good people do not run for office, others will.’ So, I did not feel right about ignoring the call,” Vagley said.
Vagley won her seat on borough bouncil and began serving the community—she's lived in Oakmont for more than 34 years—in January 2010. Unfortunately, after just two-and-a-half years on council, Vagley recently announced her resignation because she will be residing in the city and can no longer hold office in Oakmont. (Click here if you're interested in filling the vacancy).
Stepping down will be bittersweet for Vagley as she said that she will miss the ability to serve a community in such a direct fashion and working with a top notch council.
“The most rewarding part of serving on council has been the chance to work with such a high caliber council," Vagley said. "The individuals who have served with me are quite concerned with the good of the community and are dedicated to a professional and non-partisan governmental role. It has been a real pleasure to work with such a committed team.”
But Vagley can look back over her shortened term with pride over the accomplishments that she helped to achieve.
“I would say that it has been wonderful to see the recreation board renew Riverside Park and start work on the new park on Dark Hollow Road," she said. "In general, though, it has been very satisfying simply to get the roads paved and improve catch basins—just the routine work of a borough council."
While Vagley does anticipate having a little bit more spare time following her Sept. 11 resignation, she plans to look into serving her new community in some manner. She also challenges the residents of Oakmont to step up and do their part.
“I have lived in Oakmont for 34 years and have found a great spirit of volunteerism in the community, from sports programs to the garden club to the service clubs," Vagley said. "That community engagement makes Oakmont a real gem, and I see it continuing with younger people stepping up to serve on various governing boards and committees.
“I ask that each resident would seek at least one volunteer activity to keep the borough humming.”
And her parting words to her fellow Council members—“Keep up the good work!”