Lum: Howie Mallory for City Council |

Lum: Howie Mallory for City Council

On Thursday night, I watched Erik Skarvan interview 10 of the 11 applicants for Steve Skadron’s vacated City Council seat. Given Skarvan’s good nature, it wasn’t really a Squirm Night situation, but he did a good job of juggling all 10 of them (wisely splitting them into two groups) and letting them introduce themselves to the voters.

Cheers to GrassRoots and Erik Skarvan for this public service. You can watch it at

It was a surprisingly large and impressive field, given that there were only three tenable candidates in the May general election for the two open council seats, won by Art Daily and Ann Mullins.

The public is not usually involved in the appointment of a council replacement, but since this is a two-year deal, transparency is being called for. Since the public has been introduced to the applicants, I assume that the media will make endorsements, and here’s mine: I strongly endorse Howie Mallory.

The only negative thing I’ve ever heard about Howie Mallory was, “Damn! Why doesn’t he run?”

As one of the community’s best-loved residents, Mallory is the least controversial of the applicants and is the one who would take office carrying least amount of political or personal baggage.

He’s a longtime local family man who had the good sense to marry one of Franz Berko’s daughters. He’s wise and congenial, and as the head of the Community Bank when it really was a community bank, he understands the financial world.

I was more than a little bit nervous about the appointment process, but when I heard that Howie had applied for the council opening, I thought, “Perfect!” If this were a true election, I think he’d win it hands down.

If you agree, lobby the four council people (Mullins, Skadron, Daily and Frisch) to let them know how you come down on this. Mallory has volunteered much of his time to the community, and it’s high time we rewarded him with a well-paying job — just kidding.

I very much like the idea of three new faces on the council, and of the four faces left in the running, Howie’s is the one I hope to be watching for the next two years.

Su Lum is a longtime local who hopes the council does the right thing. Her column appears every Wednesday in The AspenTimes. Reach her at su@

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