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Mike Mason to run for Port Arthur District 1 council seat

Former educator and Port Arthur housing director Mike Mason intends to run for the District 1 position on the Port Arthur City Council.

Mason said his purpose is to “facilitate communication with the external public in some organized way to enhance their chances of receiving better public service, minimizing criticism and learning the values and priorities of the community.”

If successful, this would be Mason’s first time as a public elected official.

Mason listed several objectives for serving:

  • “To seek growth and a positive atmosphere for the city of Port Arthur by maintaining and demonstrating a professional attitude with all stakeholders and peers,”
  • “To work cooperatively with other councilmembers to foster a better city image,”
  • “To study best practices of other cities that face similar issues of our city to encourage forward thinking,”
  • “To be a positive ambassador for the city,”
  • “Work to establish a team approach with the council; without that progress, movement forward will not be effective,”
  • “Work to develop an atmosphere of respect for everyone’s opinion,” and
  • “Be a solution finder/problem solver instead of a problem creator.”

Mason was housing director for the city of Port Arthur from 2009-12 and is presently a senior consultant with Zachary Associates Consulting. He spent 35 years in education before becoming housing director, serving as a teacher and coach in Liberal, Kan.; Beggs, Okla.; Port Arthur, Liberty and Hamshire-Fannett school districts and then as assistant principal and principal in Hamshire-Fannett, Port Arthur (at Thomas Edison and Woodrow Wilson Middle Schools) and West Orange-Stark High School.

Mason returned to education in 2016 as interim assistant principal at Fehl-Price and Jones-Clark elementary schools in the Beaumont ISD and then as interim principal at Jones-Clark through 2018.

Mason has served in organizations such as the Port Arthur Teachers Federal Credit Union board of directors, Texas Association of Secondary School Principals, Principal’s Leadership sponsored by Union Pacific Railroad, Port Arthur Industrial Group, Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity Inc., Phi Delta Kappa, parent/student instructor and deacon at Mt. Sinai Missionary Baptist Church and missionary to Haiti.

Mason received a bachelor’s degree in health and physical education from Northwestern Oklahoma State University in 1974 and master’s degree in education mid-management from Lamar University in 1989. He also took doctoral-level classes at Nova Southeastern University on Fort Lauderdale, Fla.

Mason is the second person to announce his candidacy for District 1 councilman, following Willie “Bae” Lewis. Raymond Scott’s third and final term at that position expires this year.

Interested candidates can file for local political subdivisions from Jan. 15-Feb. 14. Election day for local offices is May 2.

About I.C. Murrell

I.C. Murrell was promoted to editor of The News, effective Oct. 14, 2019. He previously served as sports editor since August 2015 and has won or shared eight first-place awards from state newspaper associations and corporations. He was born in Memphis, Tennessee, grew up mostly in Pine Bluff, Arkansas, and graduated from the University of Arkansas at Monticello.

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