Editor’s note: The following is an open letter from Muscatine Mayor Brad Bark, who took office on January 1, 2022:
I want to extend my best wishes to you and your families in the new year ahead. Though our celebrations may have looked different over this past year, our values have not changed: time for friends, carrying on traditions, showing love, and visiting family.
As Mayor of Muscatine, my goals for the year ahead include focusing on workforce housing, keeping our city at the forefront of economic and business development, building strong partnerships with corporations and small businesses, and supporting departments that keep our neighborhoods safe, while enhancing our quality of life.
Our city is built upon the innovative foundation of our founding fathers’ industries, and we have the capability to continue doing great things! By working together, we can continue to make this a great place to raise families, go to work, and enjoy life in Eastern Iowa.
As a community, let’s come together and celebrate when amazing things happen and rally around those that need support. We are strong when we work together! I absolutely love seeing our community come together to help those in need. Our corporations and individuals continue to go above and beyond.
Even so, there will be many times that we, as a community, will not see eye to eye and disagree. Let’s continue coming together, as many parts of one body, to be responsive instead of reactive. Have the courage to go against the grain—airplanes can only fly by going against the wind!
Every individual can contribute to our community! This coming year, I encourage our local government, businesses, and especially our residents to be a beacon of hope, letting that light reflect upon our entire community. Put differences aside; forgive and move forward. Let’s continue to pour into our children as future leaders, encouraging and believing in them, showing them and training them how to succeed, so that they will.
A successful team is made up of individuals from different backgrounds who prepare, strive, and achieve a common goal, no matter the situation. Tomorrow is not guaranteed, so don’t stay on the sidelines: get into the game! Let’s surround ourselves with people that will walk beside us in life, helping one another to weather any storm that WILL come our way.
Be the light and Be Your Best!!!
Dr. Brad Bark
Mayor of The City of Muscatine