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Estherville on path for first woman mayor

Living in rural Iowa is candidate’s dream

October 27, 2017
Amy H. Peterson - Staff Writer ( , Estherville News

By Amy H. Peterson

Staff Writer

Cindy Hood seemed to appear suddenly on the Emmet County scene about two and a half years ago when she moved from New York State into a fixer upper home with her husband, Mark.

Article Photos

But Hood is not new to the area. Her father's service in the Navy took Hood and her mother and siblings away from the area to Guantanamo Bay, Midway Island, and finally to Milton, Fla. With her father away on a ship much of the time, Hood and her sisters grew up chiefly in Florida, but made frequent visits to this part of Iowa.

"I brought my grandfather here and shopped for shoes," Hood said. Hood has also reconnected with cousins in the area, and hopes to reconnect with others she has yet to meet. Some of these cousins live on a century (plus) farm near Mallard.

For 40 years, Hood said she dreamed of the day she could return to Iowa, and she prayed that the opportunity would open.

Fact Box

About Cindy Hood

Background: Retired air traffic control supervisor serving the federal government for 27.5 years, last stationed in New York.

Skills: Intensive training in management, problem solving, dispute resolution, and employee relations.

Family: Husband Mark, also retired. Numerous relatives throughout northwest Iowa, including cousins on a family century farm in Emmet County

Hood has become a fixture at city council meetings, and part of the Planning and Zoning Commission, and says she has distinct reasons for wanting to be Estherville's next mayor.

"I love the Estherville community. I have the time and energy to be active in the job of mayor because I'm retired. I want to see Estherville grow, and I believe I could help on that end. I care about the residents and want to see people come here and enjoy what we have to offer," Hood said.

In addition to the Planning & Zoning Commission, Hood is a member of the board of Spenser's Underground youth center in Spirit Lake. As a Life member of the Girl Scouts of America, Hood has also been involved in building the Girl Scout program in the Estherville area.

Hood said she hopes to lead the city council toward a trajectory of growth.

"We've lost businesses, residents, like many small towns in Iowa, but I think we're on a good track," Hood said.

Hood said the Chamber of Commerce was one entity that was helping to promote Estherville.

"More people means lower taxes, and I think there are a lot of ways to help," Hood said.

Hood said she wanted to encourage citizens to participate more in civic engagement.

"I go to city council meetings, and sometimes I'm the only citizen there," Hood said.

Hood said her leadership style is one of inclusion.

"I think Kenny [Billings] has done a super job. I would want to continue to lead toward growth and safety in Estherville," Hood said.

Hood commended the ELC Foundation and the Estherville Lincoln Central Schools for honoring the police department this fall for the Champions in Education banquet and during the school's homecoming.

"If you don't stay on top of public safety, it can get away easily," Hood said.

Hood also complimented Estherville for providing city water, sewer and electric service, and for supporting its newspaper and radio station.

"There are lots of good things, and I think this community has a strong base of support. I'd like to see more businesses come to town."

Hood said she would also be excited to serve as Estherville's first woman mayor.

The city council election takes place Nov. 7.



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