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New mayor expects more residents, businesses

Posted on January 3, 2022

Updated on January 8, 2022

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sbolejack@johnstoniannews.com | 919-424-1776

McAllister

McAllister

SELMA — Byron McAllister’s political ascent has been rapid.

After moving to Selma in 2017, he ran successfully for Town Council in 2019. And in 2021, midway through a four-year council term, he ran unopposed for mayor.

McAllister would appear to be politically ambitious; he says he has simply answered calls to serve.

“I ran for a council seat in 2019 because many of the citizens and business owners of Selma asked me to do so,” the newly sworn mayor said in an email. “In 2020-2021, a chorus of citizens asked me to run for mayor.”

“God and a sense of civic duty have led me down the political path that I am on,” McAllister added. “Elected officials are civil servants first, and Selma has a council that is serving the will of the people.”

McAllister said he comes to the mayor’s office with no agenda. “The agenda is created by the collective voice of Selma’s stakeholders,” he said. “We have to strike the appropriate balance of ideas for our community.”

Still, he has guiding principles that he holds dear, McAllister said. “Safety comes first,” he said. “Fiscal responsibility is a must, communication is key, and transparency is required.”

If the people of Selma are to shape the council’s agenda, they’ll have to be involved in the town, McAllister said. “We invite community stakeholders to invest their time and skills by joining our town committees,” he said. “We need the input of our current stakeholders and the ideas of our future stakeholders to grow Selma in a responsible way.”

McAllister said he had no to-do list with items to cross off. “The goal is continuous improvement going forward,” he said.

But that improvement will be evident, the new mayor said. “At the end of my first term you’ll see more people coming to Selma not just to visit but to stay,” he said. “Our business community will continue to grow, and the Town of Selma will have made some significant infrastructure improvements to support Selma’s future.”

Like any leader, he has his strengths and weaknesses, McAllister said. “Being able to listen has served me well so far,” he said. “Patience has never been my strong suit, but I know it is important when leading a government.”

McAllister invites Selma folks to get to know him better. “I have done a few videos introducing myself to the community over the years,” he said.

They’re on Facebook at facebook.com/McAllister4SelmaNC.

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