By: Scott Emigh, Editor-in-Chief
The Sand Springs City Council met in a regular monthly meeting Monday evening at the City Municipal Building for a swearing-in ceremony and to elect the new Mayor and Vice-Mayor.
Ward Three Councilman Mike Burdge and Ward Four Councilwoman Christine Hamner were administered the oath of office by Judge Tom Askew. Hamner won election in November and, per City-charter, began serving the remainder of former Vice-Mayor John Fothergill's term immediately after election. Burdge ran unopposed.
City Councilors serve three-year staggered terms and select a Mayor and Vice-Mayor from within. The Mayor presides over council meetings and is recognized as the ceremonial head of government. The Vice-Mayor presides in the Mayor's absence. Neither has any additional administrative duties or powers, and are primarily ceremonial positions.
Mayor Burdge was nominated by Ward Six Councilman Brian Jackson for another one-year term as Mayor and was unanimously re-elected. "Mike, you represent us well," said Ward One Councilman Phil Nollan, who seconded the nomination. "I always get good feedback about how you represent us as a city. I'm proud to have you as our mayor."
Jackson commented that in the future he would like to discuss the pros and cons of rotating the duties of Mayor and Vice-Mayor as some other communities do.
At-Large Councilman Jim Spoon nominated Ward Five Councilman Beau Wilson for the Vice-Mayor position that has remained vacant since Fothergill's resignation in December. Wilson was unanimously approved.
Mayor Burdge has served on the City Council since 1996 and has been elected mayor twelve times. He also served a six-year stent as Vice-Mayor under former Mayor Bob Walker. He is a member of the Sand Springs Education Foundation Hall of Fame and the Oklahoma Hall of Fame for City and Town Officials. In 2013 he was awarded the Sand Springs Hometown Hero Award. He is a coach for the Charles Page High School Track and Field and Cross Country teams. Burdge graduated from CPHS in 1969.
Vice-Mayor Wilson has served on City Council since 2015 and is a CPHS Class of 2003 graduate. He holds degrees from Tulsa Community College and Johnson County College and opened Beau Wilson Insurance in downtown Sand Springs last year. He was previously nominated for Vice-Mayor in 2016 by Councilman Jackson, but declined the opportunity.
Councilwoman Hamner holds master's degrees in educational leadership and counseling, both from Northeastern State University. She also holds a bachelor's degree in psychology and sociology from Rogers State University. She is a clinical supervisor at a foster care agency.