Tuesday, April 23, 2024

Cresson Mayor Teena Conway announces resignation

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After serving four years as mayor of the City of Cresson, Teena Conway officially announced her resignation during the Cresson City Council meeting Tuesday, Feb. 13.

“It was time. Life is short,” Conway told the HCN. "At this time, I want to enjoy a more stress-free life that includes traveling.”

A Cresson native, Conway originally decided to run for mayor following a suggestion from her mom after she moved back to her hometown.

“Mayor Bob (Cornett) was getting close to retirement age after serving as mayor for 18 years,” she said.

In May 2020, Conway officially took the helm as Cresson mayor — all the while being a part of many important projects for the city, like the upcoming park and the bypass.

“We were proud to incorporate an interlocal agreement with a shared sheriff's plan where we got to add some additional sheriff support,” she said. “We're proud that we still don't have property taxes — they will someday, but not under me. And the bypass is huge. That's my number one question is the bypass and the train.”

Conway said the council has also made some progress regarding the cleanup of residents’ lots in town, even though some residents pushed back on the issue.

“Some people were very prompt when reminded about our junked car ordinance and took care of removing the vehicles,” she said. “Other citizens have never responded to the city's request for them to clean up lumber, piles of tree limbs, junked vehicles and high grass. We have helped some citizens with mowing to give them a head start, but we still have repeat offenders. There are guidelines that the city must follow, and we worked closely with our city attorneys to ensure we were within our rights. We never collected fines, but they are part of the ordinances which were voted in previous to me serving as mayor.”

Although it hasn’t always been smooth sailing, Conway said her time as mayor has been a rewarding experience.

"The Granbury Chamber of Commerce has always extended a welcoming hand to Cresson,” she said. “The float that we did in the Fourth of July parade where we dressed up the city's truck as the Cresson Train was a highlight. The look on the parade crowd's faces was priceless. Some were smiling and (some) were not smiling!”

She also expressed gratitude for United Way of Hood County and the Hood County Library for giving back to the residents at the Cresson PODS.

“The Hood County Library has worked so hard to bring the books to the children at the Cresson PODS,” Conway said. “They loaded up books in their cars and brought them to Cresson and did not get a good turnout from the kiddos. But, now with the Mobile Library, it is allowing many opportunities to both kiddos and grownups!”

She added she personally loves the tradition of the lighting of the Christmas tree and the singing of the carols by the Cresson Community Church. She said being a part of the Granbury Education Foundation has brought an awareness to just how “strong Granbury ISD is to our students.”

"Their work to fulfill grants to the teachers is a tedious process but backed by their biggest fundraiser, 50 Fellas Foodfest,” she said. “There is so much offered through the various GISD programs, I've been amazed that you can learn a skill, take dual college credit classes, and learn to become an award-winning rifle team, just to name a few. Thank you to our leadership on the school board as well as our Superintendent Dr. (Jeremy) Glenn.”

She said she also enjoyed getting to work alongside the Hood County Commissioners Court and Judge Ron Massingill as she was able to learn more about how a county works.

As Conway prepares to start traveling — namely to Greece — and spend more time with family and friends, she said she will look back on her time as mayor fondly.

“My time serving the city has been successful and memorable,” she added. “I have rekindled friendships and made new friends at a fast pace while serving Cresson as mayor. I’m glad my mom gave me the gentle nudge when she did.”

She said she especially wanted to give Cornett credit for allowing her to be appointed to his council and then serve as mayor herself, while he provided “insight and historical data” along the way.

As for the next mayor of Cresson, Teena said no one had filed to run at the time of the HCN interview. The deadline to file closed Friday, Feb. 16. After the vote in May, the new mayor will be sworn into office.

Conway said as she moves on to the next chapter in her life, she hopes to continue public speaking and will challenge herself to finally publish a book about Cresson.

“(It will start) inside the classroom at the Cresson Historic School all the way through the journey serving as mayor to my hometown,” she said. “It could be a very enlightening story to many.”

Conway said she does anticipate growth in Cresson and added she looks forward to seeing “sweet, beautiful families" moving to town.

“To me, that’s exciting,” she added. “Cresson is truly the crossroads and will continue to grow. I look forward to welcoming new families into our town.”