ONEONTA – With yesterday’s statement by Mayor Gary Herzig that he would not seek another term, Democrat Mark Drnek, 8th Ward councilman, announced he is running to succeed him.
Drnek, who describes himself as a longtime community activist and advocate for local business, has been active in the city’s COVID response in his first 14 months in office.
With Community Development Director Judy Pangman, he co-chaired the City’s award-winning “Survive, Then Thrive” effort; with Al Rubin, Interim CEO of the Otsego County Chamber and dozens of community volunteers, he says he was involved every Saturday this past summer in production of the Main Street Dining events; and currently, as co-chair with Melissa Marietta of SUNY Oneonta he is engaged in the creation of a “Town-Gown Taskforce” which includes 50 representatives of the colleges and the community as committee members.
“Working with so many creative and energetic supporters of Oneonta has been a dream,” he said. “As has my time working with Council. There are so many passionate, committed people on that team.”
He praised the effectiveness of his Common Council colleagues and city staff, saying their effectiveness will allow the next mayor to accomplish even more. “I can’t begin to replicate the depth of knowledge regarding City governance that Mayor Herzig carries, but I have always succeeded when I’ve been surrounded by smart people; and these are very smart people.”
Drnek said he will lay out details of his vision in the next several weeks. In the meantime, he asks that anyone with questions contact him through his web page: 8thWardOneonta.com