Mary Lou Pauly announces City Council candidacy
May 7, 2013
By Peter Clark
A week before the King County candidate filings begin, Mary Lou Pauly has thrown her hat into the City Council ring.
Having lived in Issaquah since 1993, the Canadian born 53-year-old has served on the Development Commission for the past 19 years and has had a growing interest in taking a larger role in the city.
“I’ve spent the last three months looking at campaigning,” she said about her decision to officially announce her candidacy. “I figured it was the right time to run.”
With a background in civil engineering, the recent retiree from an environmental consulting firm has been growing in public stature for the past few years. When the council searched for a replacement for Councilwoman Maureen McCarry and, most recently State Sen. Mark Mullet, Pauly applied and was interviewed for the position. When the council chose Councilwoman Stacy Goodman and Councilman Joe Forkner for the respective positions, Pauly said that they were the right choices to make and they only heightened her esteem for those serving in the Issaquah government.
“All the hours they put forth is incredible,” she said. “If you’re a person who loves civics, it just makes you want to join their team. I mean this is the ‘A team.’”
The position she will run for is the one that Forkner will vacate in his bid for mayor. As incumbents for other expiring council seats are expected to run this year, Forkner’s is the only open seat without an incumbent.
Pauly said she hopes to bring her long-standing knowledge of land use and her great appreciation of the Central Issaquah Plan into the leadership position. Though she said she doesn’t have a written platform just yet, she intends to help the city grow within the spirit of the plan and it’s intents.
“I think the CIP is the most exciting thing to come to town,” she said. “I’m really excited about what it could be. They have a really long-range focus and I’m so proud that the council is moving forward.”
Though she has never ran an official campaign before, she is receiving significant help from multiple sources. She has met with several council members about how to proceed and her campaign has some experienced leadership; former Councilman John Traeger is serving has her campaign manager.
Regarding the election, she said she wants to find as much public input as possible.
“I want to try and get as many forums set up for the community,” she said, wanting to meet more of the public and become a more recognizable figure in Issaquah. “And, if nobody runs against me, I still think I have a big job to do.”
If three or more candidates file for the same position, state law mandates that a primary election must be held in June, leaving the two candidates that receive the most votes to compete in the November general election.
More than anything, Pauly said she hopes to maintain Issaquah through the CIP. Protecting the things she appreciates about the city is “one of the reasons that I fell in love with the CIP.”
“It’s a way of preserving everything you already have and also preserve the green space around the area,” she said.