Pat Medina has been selected to fill a vacancy on the Hotchkiss Town Council created by the resignation of Larry Jakubiak. Her appointment runs until the municipal election in April.
Council member Tom Wills said Medina shares many of the same values as Jakubiak and has a broad understanding of the community. Mary Hockenbery said it will be valuable to have a business owner on the town council as the downtown revitalization effort continues.
Four other residents had expressed interest in the vacancy, but Sheila Maki and Matt Kottenstette withdrew their names from consideration. The other two applicants were Patrick Webb and Larry Wilkening. Mayor Wendell Koontz encouraged all the unsuccessful applicants to consider applying for a vacancy on the Hotchkiss Planning Commission.
"I decided I would throw my hat in because I'm really concerned about the economy of Hotchkiss," Pat Medina said. A recent uptick in business growth is promising, and she wants to see the town's commitment to business and to the schools to continue. "I want us to do what we can to better our little community," she said.
Medina moved from Delta to Hotchkiss 20 years ago. She worked for Larry Jakubiak in the North Fork Valley Restaurant for 17 years before purchasing the business and renaming it "Pat's Bar and Grill" three years ago.
Jakubiak, who served the community for 23 years, frequently discussed issues and solicited feedback from his staff and customers. "It was a great opportunity to witness him in this position," Medina said.
She describes herself as a hard worker, a mom and a grandma who just wants to see the community thrive. "Hopefully I can do my part to help," she said.
On Tuesday, Sept. 11, the Delta County Board of Commissioners called a special meeting to consider the board's response to the Bureau of Land Management's preliminary Environmental Assessment (EA) concerning the lease parcels proposed for the December BLM sale.
Several people from the North Fork were present to provide input.