Smyrna Mayor and small business owner Mary Esther Reed announced she is running for Mayor of Smyrna. Reed, who was Vice Mayor, became Mayor in September 2013, after Mayor Tony Dover resigned.
"As Mayor, I have worked tirelessly to create better jobs by keeping Smyrna a low-tax, business-friendly community. I've also strived to make our Town government more customer-friendly to ensure taxpayers get the services they deserve, while finding ways to provide services more efficiently and eliminate wasteful spending," Reed said.
Reed served on the Smyrna Town Council for 10 years prior to becoming Mayor. During that time, Smyrna's population increased by 56 percent to 43,060 residents and is now the 15th largest city in Tennessee.
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"When I served on the Smyrna Town Council and now as Mayor, my number one priority is to listen and help solve problems," Reed, a lifelong Smyrna resident, said. "People need access to educational opportunities, good jobs and a good quality of life. I am pleased that our Town is able to continue to provide all of these opportunities to our citizens."
"Smyrna has the third lowest property tax of the 15 largest cities in Tennessee, and this is one of the reasons businesses and people have chosen to locate here. Our employment opportunities and quality of life have also drawn people to Smyrna," she said.
Rutherford County was ranked sixth in the United States for job growth by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics last fall, and Smyrna's unemployment rate is below that of the Metro Nashville-Murfreesboro area and the United States. U.S. News & World Report listed Smyrna as one of the Top 10 places in the nation to retire, and Forbes listed Smyrna as one of the Top 25 places to retire.
"It's been a team effort, with myself and the Council working with Rutherford County, State and Federal officials, and the business community to grow our local economy and enhance our quality of life. I want to continue to cultivate those relationships that are beneficial to the citizens of Smyrna, while making sure we get the most out of our tax dollars," Reed said.
In March, Standard & Poor's Rating Services raised Smyrna's general obligation debt rating from AA to AA+. In May, Smyrna was awarded the Certificate of Achievement for Excellence in Financial Reporting by the Government Finance Officers Association of the United States and Canada, for the 26th consecutive year.
Two projects underway that will provide more educational and job opportunities and enhanced quality of life are the Tennessee College of Applied Technology at Smyrna and a Town park.
The Tennessee College of Applied Technology at Smyrna is a $35 million partnership between the State and Nissan and will be located across from Nissan. Groundbreaking for the technical college will be in the fall, with classes started in 2016.
"Having Motlow State Community College and the Tennessee College of Applied Technology - Smyrna campus is a huge recruiting tool," Reed said. "The technical center will be used to train Nissan employees, as well as other businesses' employees and anyone who wants to enroll. The Tennessee Promise grants can be used at Motlow, as well as the technical center."
Smyrna received a $250,000 State grant for a Town park that will be located at the corner of Florence and Wade Herrod roads. "City parks was one area the U.S. News & World Reports focused on for their Top 10 places to retire," Reed said.
Other projects in the works include the Lowry Street Revitalization and several road improvement projects: Jefferson Pike, Florence Road, Stonecrest Parkway, Weakley Lane and the I-24/Rocky Fork Road.
Reed has served as Vice Mayor and on the Parks and Recreation Board and the Planning Commission during her 11 years on the Smyrna Town Council. She has owned and operated The Learning Circle, an educational supply store, for the past 11 years.
"I've served 11 years in Smyrna Town government, am a small business owner, a wife and mother. I have the experience and passion necessary to keep Smyrna moving in the right direction. I am honored and humbled to serve as Mayor, and I respectfully ask the residents of Smyrna to allow me to continue to represent them and the Town of Smyrna," Reed said.
Reed is a graduate of Smyrna High School and Middle Tennessee State University and was a teacher at John Coleman Elementary and Smyrna Primary schools. Her husband, Britt, is a Rutherford County Sheriff's Department Lieutenant in the Detectives' Division, and her son, Parker, is a student at Smyrna High School.
Reed is the daughter of Kenneth "Coon" and Esther Victory and the granddaughter of Lee Victory and Frank Crosslin. Reed's father served as Smyrna Town Commissioner Lee Victory was a Rutherford County Commissioner, and Crosslin served on the Rutherford County School Board.
Reed has been actively involved in Smyrna and Rutherford County. She served as President of the Boys & Girls Club of Rutherford County, MTSU National Alumni Association and the Blue Raider Athletic Association. Reed also served on the Board of Directors for StoneCrest Hospital, MTSU Foundation, Linebaugh Library Foundation, United Way of Rutherford & Cannon Counties, Read to Succeed, Rutherford County Convention & Visitors Bureau, and CB&S Bank.
Mary Esther Reed
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