Greenwood Mayor Doug Kinslow delivered the annual State of the City address on Monday evening, March 9.
His opening statement, a humble thanks to the citizens of Greenwood for allowing him to serve as the city’s leader. Also, to his Executive Assistant and the city’s first Director of Human Resources, Danielle Smith. He went on to acknowledge Laura Shepherd, the city’s first receptionist. Lastly, Kinslow thanked his family for their enduring support.
Perhaps the city’s most outstanding accomplishment was the passage of the traffic relief measure. Mayor Kinslow credited those who worked together to make the historic passage possible. “We were able to do it, and without raising any taxes,” shared Kinslow. –See related story
Kinslow praised the Greenwood Police Department as “one of the best in the state.” Adding that the department has implemented church patrols, and that the work the department does within the school district helps keep the children safe on a daily basis. Kinslow also recognized the professionalism of the fire department, and thanked Chief Stewart Bryan for his years of service to the city. “Our volunteer fire department is second to none in the state,” stated Kinslow. Adding that the city now has an ISO rating of two.
The Mayor went on to recognize the efforts of the street department, their work on right-of-ways, clearing brush, debris and “paving the way for the future.” Lastly, Kinslow recognized the effectiveness of the recycling center.
Tammy Briley, Parks Director, was recognized for her work on the walking trails and playgrounds. Kinslow also recognized the Parks and Recreation Commission, the successes of the Economic Development Committee, Finance Director and the work of the Greenwood City Council.
As of 2020, the city “is receiving an uptick of financial revenue of about 4.5%,” and has a balanced budget of $11.9 million.
Greenwood Schools Superintendent John Ciesla, who was also recognized as the Citizen of the Year for 2019, “has led our school district as number two rated district in the state…Greenwood has also been rated as number one as the best place to teach in Arkansas.” He went on to share the successes of the athletic teams and coaches within the district. He specifically thanked Coach Jones for his contributions to the Bulldogs, and wished him well in future endeavors.
Kinslow reflected on the 2019 flooding event, stating it was reminiscent of when Greenwood experienced the 1968 tornado. “I saw neighbors helping neighbors, caring for each other, checking on each other.”
The “road to growth,” as Kinslow concluded with thoughts on the traffic relief measure. “It will be completed in three years. That is not far down the road.” Looking forward, Kinslow shared ideas such as transitioning the municipal building to solar power. He went on to highlight the improvements of the water and wastewater departments.
Kinslow spoke on the partnerships with Western Arkansas Planning and Development District and the Chamber of Commerce, “making our city more business friendly.” Additionally, Kinslow stressed the importance of residents participating in the upcoming census.
He spoke with emotion and from the heart as he concluded the State of the City address, reflecting on his father, and others who have contributed to the success of the great City of Greenwood. “People ask me why I wanted to be mayor…I love recognizing unsung heroes, who love this city without seeking any recognition. It reminds me of a lesson my dad taught me about the importance of being a good servant.”
In his second term, Kinslow stated that he is as thankful to be serving as mayor as he was when he first took office in 2014. “I am striving to represent you, our citizens in a manner that mirrors the dedication and love that you have…God bless you, and the City of Greenwood.”
To read Mayor Kinslow’s State of the City addresss in its entirety, click HERE.