Back in 1984, my brother and his family moved from Kansas to St. Charles County. At the time, I was living in Maryland Heights and I asked him, "Why do you live way out there?" He told me it was a peaceful area and a nice place to raise a family. To be honest, I thought my brother was nuts because at the time, St. Charles County was too far away and too rural in my mind. Experience quickly proved me wrong.
In 1985, a year after my brother moved, I was offered a good job working for the City of St. Peters. In the mid-80s, St. Peters was a bedroom community and there was no Mid Rivers Mall or Mid Rivers Mall Drive. Mexico Road was a two-lane road. I took that job with the City of St. Peters and built a home. I soon realized what my brother was talking about and understood why he moved to St. Charles County. I also realized how fast the area was starting to grow.
Back then, keeping up with the growth and development was a challenge for local governments. I can remember the St. Peters Board of Aldermen meetings lasting well after midnight as zoning adjustments and other changes were made to accommodate the growth. I know St. Peters Mayor Len Pagano and Alderman Don Aytes remember those long meetings because they were aldermen back then. I was a young man when I moved to St. Peters, which was a good thing because I worked long hours as the city’s Building Commissioner. It was an exciting time to be part of the area’s initial growth and see opportunity unfold.
I quickly learned to love St. Charles County, and can't imagine living anywhere else. The growth and opportunity continue as Amazon and other Fortune 500 companies come to our community and we rank in the top 25 counties in the nation for high-tech job growth. We’ve proven it’s possible to have a vibrant economy in a beautiful, peaceful and family-focused county. I consider it an honor to serve as a member of the County Council during this time and to give back to this community that I call home.