Bexley City Council is accepting letters of interest from residents who wish to fill a seat that will be vacated by Councilwoman Anne Lewis, who announced at council's May 27 meeting that she is resigning due to work and family commitments.
Lewis, who was appointed to council in March 2012 and elected to her current term in November, said council's June 10 meeting will be her last.
Residents should submit letters of interest to Debbie Maynard, assistant to the mayor, at firstname.lastname@example.org through June 12. Interviews will be held June 16 and 17 and the new member will be appointed and sworn in at the beginning of council's meeting on June 24, according to the city's website, Bexley.org.
The appointee will serve the remainder of Lewis' term, which expires Dec. 31, 2015.
Lewis said she found out a week before the November election that her division at Merck & Co. was being eliminated after she had been with the pharmaceutical company for 17 years. She said she decided to resign from council because of the demands in her new job as a scientific liaison with San Francisco-based biotechnology firm Genetech.
Assigned to a region that includes Ohio, New Jersey and upstate New York, "The sheer degree and volume of traveling and getting used to a new job is overwhelming," Lewis said.
Lewis, a Bexley native, said she agonized over the decision to leave council, but realized that she must set priorities.
"I made a commitment (to council), but I don't believe in doing anything halfway," she said.
Lewis said her first priority is her family; she and her husband, Tom, have five children. In addition to her service on council, Lewis is also vice president of the Bexley Public Library's board of trustees and has overseen Bexley's Fourth of July activities and the Bexley Celebrations Association for the past five years.
Lewis said she will continue in her role with the library and the Bexley Celebrations Association for the time being, but also will continue to evaluate her commitments and work schedule.
Lewis said she has enjoyed her time on council and has had a productive working relationship with her fellow council members and city staff. She said there is no one accomplishment that stands out the most during her time with council, but she has learned to appreciate even more the hard work of those who choose to be involved in community service.
"The thing that is underestimated is what it takes to do the job," she said. "Council opened my eyes. The way we're able to live the way we do in Bexley is because we have exceptional people involved at all levels."