We support the candidacy of Ron Madrid for mayor of State College. He is the strongest candidate in terms of his ability to solve the borough’s most pressing problem, which is the need to maintain a quality of life that will be attractive to homeowners and long-term residents, while being hospitable in reaching out to students and other temporary residents. The borough cannot continue to lose homeowners, who pay most of the property taxes that constitute its budget, if it is to support the quality of life that all its residents want.
For many years, Madrid has lived near Penn State’s campus, in a neighborhood with a majority of student residents. In his role as president of the Holmes-Foster Neighborhood Association, he has shown extraordinary skill in balancing the interests of homeowners and students. He has established a neighborhood email network and newsletter, and frequently communicates about upcoming community events or meetings, ranging from discussions of zoning, traffic or funding questions to school board issues, and he always does so in a fair and even-handed way. Beyond the Holmes-Foster neighborhood, he has also shown his commitment to State College as a whole through volunteer service on groups such as the Planning Commission and the Historic Resources Commission.
Most important, Madrid’s leadership style is to emphasize fairness, integrity and openness to all constituencies, while avoiding special deals, bureaucratic confusion, or unnecessary red tape and delays. He is a calm, hands-on, efficient and bipartisan leader, with the long experience and community commitment to lead State College.
Robert and Caroline Eckhardt