Editor’s note: Profiles of candidates for the Flemington City Council ran in last Sunday’s Courier. However, email problems kept one from getting his profile to us. Here it is:
Timothy Byler, 51, was born in Copperhill, TN, and spent his early years in Pennsylvania and Maryland. He moved to Liberty County in 1995 and has been a resident of Flemington for 10 years.
He has served as the lead pastor of Connection Church in Flemington for 13 years. Additionally, he is a strategist for businesses and churches. He is an international speaker, advising leaders in business, nonprofits and state and local government. He is a community leader, and is vice chairman of the Liberty Consolidated Planning Commission, where he has served multiple terms. He is on the Citizens Advisory Council for the Hinesville Area Metropolitan Planning Organization and was recently appointed to the Advisory Council to Airport Authority by the Liberty County Development Authority.
Byler holds a master’s degree from Chesapeake Bible Seminary and received an honorary doctorate from St. Thomas Seminary for his development of courses for that school. Additionally, Byler has management training received over a decade and a half of management of Ford and Toyota dealerships and Greyhound terminals in Baltimore, MD.
He has been married for 26 years and they have four children.
Byler said he has a vision for the city.
"Flemington has a unique personality," he said. "It has a history that needs to be preserved. Yet at the same time, it’s location on the 84 corridor and proximity to Hinesville means that Flemington is destined for growth. It will take strategic leadership to bring progress to our city while at the same time, we continue to preserve that historical charm.
"Leadership requires teamwork. Governing a city requires maintaining a perspective on what is needed for the citizens, the businesses, and the growth of that city. In every arena of management I have worked, and especially as a pastor and community leader, I have had to serve the needs of many people while leading them to progress. That requires protecting the interests of every person and developing strategic ways to implement progress that will beneficial to all."
Byler said he wants a clear long range plan developed for Flemington.
"Growth in our community is accelerating rapidly. Traffic counts on the 84 corridor now rival the traffic counts on Abercorn Extension leading into Savannah. New businesses are being built. New housing developments are under construction. If we do not stay out in front of the growth with a strategic plan, the growth will dictate the plan. Without a plan, the growth itself will drive taxes, traffic, crime rates, safety concerns – everything. We have a strong picture of what our city should look like in the future. We have a comprehensive plan. We need a stronger long term strategy to bring that plan into fruition."
He said he chose Flemington because he and his family love the city.
"Every city has a personality," he said. "Flemington is something special. It is a place with unique historical charm - a place where the growth that occurs can add to that charm. Flemington is on the edge of becoming a place that people will travel to experience. That will be good for us as a city. It will add value to the entire county. I feel called to help make that happen."
There are eight other candidates vying for the six seats on the council. The others are incumbents, Charles Richardson, Palmer Dasher, Donnie Smith, David Edwards and Gail Fox Evans, and newcomers Elliott Godwin, Rene Harwell and Keith Moran. Incumbent Paul Hawkins is running for mayor.
— Staff report