THURMAN - Leading her Arabian horse "Burner" down a path on a hill where her family has lived for generations, Evelyn Wood offered her thoughts Friday about life in her beloved Thurman.
"This is the best place to live and raise kids - I wouldn't leave it," she said. "My ancestors lived here, married here, worked and raised kids here - and they're buried here."
Evelyn Wood, a 33-year-old mother of two youngsters, is the sole declared candidate to lead the Town of Thurman government - and she's been visiting neighbors town this last week with petitions for her candidacy.
Wood decided to run following the resignation in July of the town's Supervisor and Deputy Supervisor, after issues arose that sparked considerable controversy.
Wood seeks a new, collaborative approach
Wood's family's lengthy history in town may give her a useful perspective in leading the town, unifying the various factions and tackling a variety of pressing issues, Wood said Friday.
"I'm finding I have common ground with folks who've lived here forever, and those who are new to town as well," she said. "When you are supervisor, you have to interact with all the folks, and not everybody's going to agree with you all the time."
She added that if elected, she's not going to take criticism personally.
"At some point, a town supervisor will do something someone doesn't like - you can't make everyone happy all the time - but it's all part of the job, she said. "I think I've got thick skin."
Her candidacy breaks new ground
She said some people have questioned her relative youth. If elected, she'll be the first female supervisor to ever serve in the post, and certainly the youngest in recent history.
"I was told I was nuts a couple of times," she said, referring to her decision to run. "But experience is not necessarily tied to age."