History: Election season | AspenTimes.com

History: Election season

“Becoming the first mayor of Snowmass was not something [Jack] Schuss planned on” claimed an article from the Snowmass Affairs magazine, March 1980. “He was teaching skiing at Aspen Highlands, and took part in starting the BOLD (Blind Outdoor Leisure Development) program with Jean Eymere. Eventually he became national director, which meant he was in charge of finding ski instructors around the country who were willing to learn how to teach the blind how to ski. In addition, he had an investment counseling business, dabbled in the business of biofeedback clinics, and was the father of four teenagers who are now on their own. …It was the frustrating experience of becoming president of the Snowmass Homeowners’ Association that led Schuss to the mayor’s office. He tells the story ‘There were nine different homeowners’ associations in this valley prior to incorporation, and I was on the board of the largest one in terms of revenue. Once a month we would have a meeting and we’d talk about problems; how do we get garbage removal, how do we enforce covenants, how-do-we-how-do-we-how-do-we…. So then I was asked to be president. It seemed like an innocuous enough job because we met once a month — y’know, a little coffee, a little crying, a few towels and that was about the extent of it.’” Shortly thereafter, the County passed a resolution that spelled out a growth plan for Snowmass predicting to double the population in the next 15 years. He realized the current situation wasn’t going to work and a different way of organizing was needed. ‘Essentially, I was president for about six months when I resigned to become head of the Committee to Incorporation, which was basically me.’” Even with push back from the developers, the county and the Snowmass Resort Association, an election was held with a result of 60 percent of residents wanting incorporation and later voting Schuss as their first mayor.


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