I don’t put political signs in my yard very often but this go round, it was a no-brainer. Julie Shaffley is clearly more than qualified to retain her seat on the Port of Centralia Commission. As vice-president and now president of the board she has shown and proven her leadership.

Not too many years ago this community was crushed economically when the TransAlta coal mine shut down. As a former radio news reporter here I remember covering the job fair at Centralia College for the displaced coal mine workers. There were 700-800 displaced workers and many of them had to leave our community in search of jobs to simply replace the income they were earning.

Additionally, the schools, fire department, library and city all took huge hits to their tax base. Centralia and Lewis County hadn’t apparently learned their lesson the first go round back in the 80’s as to what happens to communities when you are tied to one single industry. All is great until the day comes when that industry is gone.

Well, now thanks to Julie Shaffley, Dan Keahey and Executive Director Kyle Heaton, Centralia does not have to be concerned with an “all eggs in one basket” scenario any time soon. The port has now replaced and surpassed the lost tax revenue with the shut down of TransAlta. They have also done it with a diversified plan of growth including both industrial, warehousing and retail.

There are now more than 2,000 employees working at the different industries and businesses located on port property. These are family wage jobs, employees can earn a lifetime wage with these jobs and if one struggles, there are many more already in place to make up that lost ground. Centralia does not have to worry ever again about one business shutting its doors thanks to the leadership and vision of the Port of Centralia led by President Julie Shaffley.

She and the staff of six at the Port, that’s right a staff of six and three of them are maintenance and grounds crew, have led the city into a very secure position for not only years but decades to come.

Julie Shaffley is a successful businesswoman and has owned and run the Good Health Nutrition Center in Centralia coming up on 30 years. Her business is a shining example of what you get with a person that has strong business sense and skills and she is now sharing those skills with all of us.

The choice is clear and simple, Julie Shaffley equals success, there is literally no other choice. Please join me in voting for Julie Shaffley to retain her seat on the Port of Centralia Commission.

 

Paul Walker

Centralia

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