Conroe officially has a new mayor and City Council member after a special meeting Wednesday.
Mayor Toby Powell and Councilman Duane Ham each took the oath of office Wednesday morning surrounded by a standing-room-only crowd at City Hall.
“I wanted to say what a great team effort we had in running this election,” Powell said after state Sen. Brandon Creighton, R-Conroe, administered the oath. “We had so many people standing out in the rain and in the wind and the heat and everything. It was a tremendous effort on everybody’s part. Everybody stood tall and stood there for me and I’ll never forget it.
“I’ll do the best I can to serve you as your mayor. If you have anything that you need, my door is open to you.”
Creighton acknowledged the amount of work it takes to be a public servant, noting the numerous city, county, and state elected officials and citizen volunteers in the room.
“All of us love this city and we all realize how much it takes to offer ourselves for public service; it’s tough,” he said. “It’s a tough arena and it’s worth it. It’s not a cliché to say that we’re fighting for what’s right in America and it starts with community right here at home. We’re proud of Toby and Vanessa (Powell).
“They’re offering themselves and talent for public service. It’s not the first time; we’ve seen their contributions to the city of Conroe for so many years, the business community and right here in this chamber.”
Ham took the oath of office from former Montgomery County Judge Alan Sadler and promised to “work for the people.”
“The city has my personal cellphone; I’m available to every single person in this city,” he said after taking the oath. “I promise to lead from the front, lower taxes and fight the high water bills that we face every day in Montgomery County. I promise to do all that.”
Outgoing Mayor Webb Melder and Councilwoman Marsha Porter each traded places with those replacing them to a standing ovation from the crowd. Powell assumed his position as chair of the meeting and Ham to the right of him before adjourning the meeting.