The city council inauguration and organizational meeting is always a more festive occasion. Yes, there are formalities, and as council rules have evolved, a full council nomination process and vote for the vice president position. As the nominations were motioned, I had no idea that I would be experiencing a moment that I would never ever forget. My little two-year-old son, Beckett, who had been getting a little antsy in the front row of the gallery, broke free to make his way up to the dais insisting to sit on my lap!
The Berkshire Eagle’s Amanda Drane was right there and saw the whole thing:
“The room buzzed with tension leading into the roll-call vote, when Krol’s 2-year-old son, Beckett, freed himself of his mother’s grasp and scuttled up to his father’s lap. The toddler clung to Krol’s left shoulder as he used his right hand to swear the oath.”
I am blessed with such supportive family and it was a thrill to have such a special moment with my little guy. I appreciate the opportunity to serve for another two years and I look forward to helping our city reach higher in the years go come.
It’s interesting when things wind to a close, you can’t help but think back on how it all began. This has not been simply a campaign, but instead, a beautiful opportunity to renew everything that has made my time in public service so rewarding and special. The twelve weeks of door-to-door work was far less about introducing myself to my ward, but more about reacquainting myself with old friends and often picking-up on conversations that we began four years ago. Sure, we’ve been able to address issues
by asking “how can I help you” – but in my conversations with you, the residents of Ward 6, it is me who has benefited the most. I thank you for your hospitality and your kindness.
Ward 6 is a remarkable section of the city. It’s the city’s most diverse ward, socioeconomically, ethnically and otherwise – and yet – amid it all there is an optimism that runs consistently from our downtown, West Side Neighborhood, to our residents on Onota Lake and past Berkshire Community College – and everywhere in-between. Ward 6 is a home of great, large families. Some have been here for generation after generation, like the Hamiltons with family throughout the West Side, the Loehrs and Salatinos, and of course, the Tierneys whose imprint is undeniable in Ward 6 and throughout Pittsfield. There are so many more.
My family is here. Raising Arden just a stone’s throw from the beautiful playground at Crosby Elementary School is a true blessing. Living in a neighborhood with other toddlers as playmates makes it even better.
Yes, we have our challenges. But, I believe that we can only meet those challenges by having a vision and working together with your colleagues and our residents. It’s been a formula that has worked for me time and time again. Often I have found that I am most effective as a councilor when I have my constituents backing me up. And, isn’t that how it should be in a democracy? Whether it was working to get a road reconstructed, improving the health and safety in our ward and city, or in enhancing the quality of life through work to improve our schools or making Pittsfield more business-friendly – you can’t do it alone.
Building consensus and working well with others to find better solutions is what I have done best. This is what we need more than ever. Too often, government gets a bad name because of players who are more interested in the political games than getting things accomplished. Often, people are turned-off from the political process because some candidates are more interested in attacking their opponents than providing ideas on how we can make things better.
I believe that I have shown the people of Ward 6 in this campaign that I will vigorously set the record straight when it is called for – but without exception – I will stay focused on what is important: A professional, consensus-building and progressive approach to my role as city councilor.
In my time on the council, I have listened to my constituents. Their ideas and strongly-held beliefs are something that I have made my own. I believe in a revitalized West Side Neighborhood through continued partnerships and the realization of the Riverway vision. I believe in creating a new, state-of-the-art high school environment for our children and families – and I have been willing to walk the long, winding road to help get us there. I believe that every child, whether they live in the West Side Neighborhood or on outer West Street, should be as prepared to learn as all their peers when they walk into the classroom on the first day of school. And yes, I believe that we can achieve greater things in this community. You know, it wasn’t long ago when it was more often a great day for the city of Pittsfield than otherwise, and we dared to dream of becoming the greatest small city in the Northeast.
Today, the forecast says that the sun will be shining. Sure, it’ll be cold out there – but it’s November 5th in the Berkshires. I know I’ll be out there to see all of the friends I have made over the years, the memorable moments and little anecdotes that have enriched my own life and that of my family.
This is my home, Ward 6 in the city of Pittsfield. I am your neighbor and I have been there for you. Today, I humbly ask you to again consider me to be your representative on the city council.
Best wishes – and I’ll see you at the polls, and I’ll see you in the neighborhood.
It doesn’t happen often, but journalist Dan Valenti, of planetvalenti.com, today agreed with the Berkshire Eagle on who is best fit to serve Ward 6. See Mr. Valenti’s description below:
WARD 6: VOTE KROL
The marquee ward race pits incumbent John Krol versus former Ward 7 councilor (and failed mayoral candidate) Joe Nichols. THE PLANET moderated a live debate between these two in which the differences were stark. To sum up with a broad brushstroke, we think Krol represents the more forward-thinking political style. Nichols seems too much a blast from the past. Nichols campaign basically amounted to little more than the assertion that “Krol doesn’t return calls” and not much else. You’d find plenty of Ward 6 residents who would dispute that Krol “doesn’t return calls.” In fact, Krol has been one of the most responsive ward councilors in recent memory. Krol has grown immensely since his first election. He has become more of an independent voice and vote, and he has displayed an open mind when it comes to city issues. As a ward representative, he has been true to the people who elected him. Nichols seems little more than a member of the slate that Bianchi has put together in an attempt to obtain control of the city council. In Ward 6, it’s Krol all the way.
To the editor of THE EAGLE:
As the campaigning winds down and folks start thinking about who to elect for city counselor, I’m very fortunate that my decision is easy. He’s the same bright, energetic and committed man that I voted for two years ago, John Krol. I have had the pleasure of knowing John in different venues over the years but it’s his dedication to his constituents and the city of Pittsfield where he shines the brightest.
Last month, while on his campaign trail, John stopped at my home. I had been discouraged, as several years ago the city removed large trees from our front yard, along with the curb and then resurfaced the road. Those changes all led to water pooling in our yard and draining into our basement. John assured me that he would speak with the city. Within a few days, he returned with Peter Bruneau, manager of the highway department. A couple of days later, a new curb was installed, soil filled in across the bottom of my yard, and the water issue resolved!
As a Ward 6 resident, it is comforting to know that John Krol has our best interests first and foremost as he continues to represent us. We need to be there for John on Election Day as he has been for us. Please join me as I support and vote for incumbent John Krol for Ward 6 city counselor.
To the editor of THE EAGLE: (10/20/2013)
John Krol has always stood up for what is best for Pittsfield’s Ward 6. He is always ready to do what his constituents need for him to do. If a resident has a problem he will try to work out the best solution. That doesn’t always mean the resident gets what they want but the ward gets what is best.
He is one of the best advocates for the children of this ward as well, working with the elementary schools to make it a better place to send your children. As a parent and homeowner in Ward 6 I am pleased to be placing my vote for John Krol. Please consider placing your vote for him as well, on Nov. 5. KATIE BRELSFORD Pittsfield
(Berkshire Eagle, Oct. 18, 2013)
To the editor of THE EAGLE:
We are writing to enthusiastically endorse John Krol for re-election as Pittsfield’s Ward 6 city councilor.
John works tirelessly to support our community on many levels, and his unwavering commitment to Pittsfield Public Schools is particularly commendable. As elementary school teachers and parents of a toddler, the quality of public education is especially important to us. John has a unique understanding of the delicate balance between property value, taxes, school budget, and school choice, and the way these issues affect the future of this community.
I believe John’s dedication as city councilor will bring about the kind of change that can positively affect the quality of our public schools. We are lucky to have an advocate for west Pittsfield with such keen intelligence, youthful energy, and dedication to the improvement of our community.
By protecting the quality of life in Ward 6 and ardently supporting our schools, John Krol has unquestionably earned our vote on Nov. 5.
To the editor of THE EAGLE:
(appeared in the Berkshire Eagle Oct. 15, 2013)
I am writing to express support for John Krol as the incumbent who is once again campaigning for re-election as city councilor for Ward 6 in the city of Pittsfield.
I have had the distinct pleasure of knowing John both professionally and personally over the past seven years. I, as a former city employee who worked with John as a councilor, found that he was always professional, attentive, respectful and a tireless advocate for his ward and the entire city. Four years later, he is still going strong and is very consistent in his passion for the city.
John is a dedicated husband, father, professional, and ward councilor and works above and beyond to ensure that he meets the needs of his ward constituents, and the entire city and county. He plays an active role on many committees and spends a lot of effort improving the quality of life for Pittsfield residents.
As a city taxpayer and active voter, what I really appreciate about John is his consistency and longevity. His website is active all year long and he engages citizens even in non-voting years. He is not a councilor who only comes active during an election season and if you are looking for someone who is confident, consistent, and will be an advocate for the city of Pittsfield in an effort to move forward, I ask that you vote for John Krol in the upcoming election.
JAMES J. WILUSZ
(Berkshire Eagle Oct. 13, 2013)
To the editor of THE EAGLE:
I am proud to call John Krol my Ward 6 councilor. He has always been there for my neighborhood, advocating for the needed reconstruction of our street, leading the effort for common sense mosquito control and for his professional approach to issues before the City Council.
However, what I love most about John is his passion and commitment to the community. This is perhaps best reflected by his dedication spreading positive energy through his daily radio program “Good Morning Pittsfield.” Each morning, he volunteers his time to intelligently inform the community. It has also been a priceless sounding board for individuals and organizations, myself included, to promote causes that so many of us are passionate about.
John, you have my vote on Nov. 5. Thank you for all you do for our community.
To the editor of THE EAGLE:
I want to urge everyone in Ward 6 to vote for John Krol for Pittsfield City Councilor. John is a positive force working tirelessly to improve our city.
My personal experience with John was very positive. I contacted him and then-City Councilor Mike Ward concerning the state Department of Conservation and Recreation’s landscape designations for the Pittsfield State Forest.
John and Mike took my concerns seriously and actually had the head of the DCR attend a meeting of the City Council, where they grilled him on the DCR’s plans. The council wrote a letter to the DCR, which I’m certain won some concessions to protect our wonderful forest.
John also originated and hosts the “ Good Morning Pittsfield” radio show on WTBR.
His show highlights many very positive and even controversial things happening in Pittsfield and the Berkshires.
Please vote for Krol and help keep his positive energy going!
BRAD HERDER Pittsfield