MARTINSBURG, W.Va. (DC News Now) — Talk about citizen action in government! In Martinsburg, West Virginia, a middle school student is about to be mayor. Even though this term only lasted a day, City Hall may never be the same.
Martinsburg Mayor Kevin Knowles is all about citizen input in running his fast-growing city in the eastern panhandle of the mountain state. So he invited middle school students to write an essay about their goals if they could be mayor, even if just for a day.
“I could see there was a lot of passion about what she wanted to do as mayor of the city and it was one step above everybody else, but it was a very, very tough decision,” said Knowles.
South Middle School’s Jayden Hall is the winner of the essay contest. He had lunch with Mayor Knowles before heading to city hall where he presided over the night’s city council meeting.
“Keep your eyes and your ears open. Martinsburg is moving forward real fast!” Jayden said with a giggle.
What does “Mayor” Hall’s mom think about her daughter’s future in running the city?
“Right now she’s set on some actressing or something like that, but I feel Jayden is a good face for the community,” Brittany Taylor said with a laugh.
“I think she’ll be an excellent mayor. I think Mayor Knowles needs to look out,” said South Middle School Principal Mark Barney.
While the new mayor has the added responsibility of presiding over a city council meeting tonight, she’ll still be sure to complete her homework assignment for school. Along with the resolutions the council considered tonight under the direction of the city’s “new mayor,” there will be a special salute to Martinsburg’s first responders.