Aurora City Council Candidate Q and A

Seth Kinker
Aurora Advertiser

The Aurora City Council is comprised of five At Large members elected on a non-partisan basis, all with three-year terms.

City Council appoints the City Manager, City Clerk and the City Treasurer.

This year, the terms of Mayor Doyle Ferguson and Councilman Don McWade expire with Doyle Ferguson and Tony Kennedy as the two candidates running for those seats. Below is a short Q and A with the two candidates for the two council seats.

Tony Kennedy
Aurora city clerk Kathie Needham swears in new city council members Doyle Ferguson (left) and Don McWade in 2018.

Occupation?

Doyle Ferguson (DF): I am a business owner in Aurora.

Tony Kennedy (TK): I've worked the last 21 years in IT.  I'm currently the Director of IT for Blackstone Investment Group, parent company of the LuggageWorks brand among many others.

What party are you affiliated with, if any?

DF: I do not affiliate with any party.

TK: I would classify myself as traditionally conservative.  Lately with the extremities of both parties driving further apart, I'm intrigued by where the new center will present itself and how this will integrate into modern politics.

What experience do you have in civil service?

DF: I have served two terms as an Aurora City Council Member and am seeking a third term.

TK: This will be my first foray, but I have attended countless council meetings and like to stay up-to-date with the challenges faced by council.

What made you want to run for the city council seat?

DF: I love our town and wanted to serve the citizens of Aurora.

TK: I found myself at a point where I was fully disappointed with politics in general, especially seeing the rhetoric around the country during the peak of the pandemic.  It was then that I made a choice to participate, rather than ignore, in an effort to feel less helpless as legislators around the country found increasing comfort in dodging decisions.  The greatest responsibility for any member of a representative government is to drive initiatives that are important to those they were elected to represent.  This is a wonderful process and one to which I have an immeasurable amount of respect.  I've discussed this decision with my family and friends for years, and I feel there's been no better time to get involved.  I want to work with the council to restore faith in the process, and hopefully inspire more positive community interaction as a result.

What do you think are some of the biggest issues the city is currently facing?

DF: I believe one of the biggest challenges Aurora faces is affordable housing.

TK: I believe the economy has long bypassed a time where Aurora could maintain itself as a bedroom community.  It is no longer realistic to travel out of town daily for employment for many in our area.  This is driving the unemployment rate higher and with that brings a plethora of other problems.

How do you plan to help address these issues? 

DF: I will continue to work to develop a strong, approachable Community Development department and will continue searching to create opportunities for developers and builders.

TK: We need to develop competitive business incentive packages to attract larger employers to our city, and entice current businesses to expand.  We have a wonderful portfolio of small businesses in town, but they simply cannot do this alone.  I want to see the overall income level of the city increase so these businesses, both small and large, can enjoy more patrons and as a result create even more opportunities.  Once we create forward momentum, we can begin to address some of the issues created by the drought of quality employment over the years.