Avon City Councilman Bryan Jensen announced Tuesday morning that he wants Avon Mayor Jim Smith’s job.
Smith has repeatedly stressed that he has no intention of seeking another term as mayor after almost 20 years serving the city.
And after four terms totaling eight years as councilman, Jensen, 52, stated that he is ready to take his committment to the city to the next level.
“It has been a pleasure to work with Mayor Smith under whose leadership we’ve seen amazing growth in Avon,” Jensen said in a Tuesday press release. “My goal is to continue that legacy of smart growth and to do my part to keep Avon a wonderful and safe place to live and work.”
Asked why he decided to run for mayor, in a Tuesday interview, Jensen said, “I thought about it for a long time. It’s an exciting time for the city. I think Avon’s best times are still ahead.”
“The biggest thing facing Avon is growth,” Jensen said.
If elected, Jensen said since many of the major city projects have been completed, he would focus on building the city’s rainy day fund while continuing to address the flood control issues and work on improving “all other aspects of Avon city government and its services for its residents” as the community continues to grow.
“I think the mayor has done an awful lot,” Jensen said, adding that whoever takes Smith’s place can help Avon catch up to city’s like Westlake “if it’s managed correctly.”
“Our philosophies are very similar,” he said referring to Smith. “He’s certainly a little more aggressive than probably I am. He’s a ‘Hall of Fame’ mayor.”
Jensen intends to build on Smith’s achievements for the city.
He would be afraid, he said, if someone was elected mayor and tried to “dismantle” everything Smith has established for the city.
Jensen has lived the majority of his life in Avon, he said, close to 30 years, and has been the president of Pinehaven Greenhouses in Avon for 28 years. He was born in Avon, moved to Avon Lake with his parents when he was younger and then moved back to Avon after graduation, he said.
While Jensen and his wife of 27 years, Kimberly, lived in Elyria for a time, they raised their two children in Avon, both of them attending Avon schools and graduating from Avon High School. He will become a first-time grandfather this August, he said.
Serving the city of Avon is somewhat of a family affair for the Jensens. Jensen’s father, Neils, was an Avon City Councilman for 10 years.
Jensen isn’t only involved with city government. Over the years he has volunteered with the school district and city sports programs, including coaching youth soccer, he said.
In the Tuesday press release, Jensen highlighted the following “notable achievements and qualifications”:
•Graduate of West
Liberty State College in West Virginia with a double major in Business Management and General Business
•Served four terms as an Avon City Councilman
•Served two years on the Avon Planning
Commission and eight years on the Avon Safety and Service Committees
•Member of the French Creek Merchants Association
•28-year businessman in the City of Avon; president of Pinehaven Greenhouses, a major wholesale and retail supplier of flowers throughout Northern Ohio
•past president of the Greater Cleveland Flower Growers Association
After serving the city for eight years, Jensen said, “I understand where we started from and where we are heading.
Jensen isn’t running for mayor “just to run,” he said.
“I want to be a great mayor,” he said.