Readying for the executive challenge


The campaigns are over, the ads have disappeared and the signs are put away. So now what?

First of all, thank you to the voters of Chautauqua County for participating in the greatest democracy in the world. Second, thank you to those who stepped forward to say they wanted to make a difference by voicing their ideas and putting their reputation and personal experience up for public scrutiny. Third, thank you to the campaign financial donors, volunteers, debate organizers, media professionals, and our election officials who rallied behind a candidate, a cause, or our democratic process to ensure a fair election of our local government leaders.

For those who ran but did not win, thank you for challenging the status quo and energizing the conversation for improving our communities. For those who were elected, it’s time to get to work to deliver on our campaign promises.

Our voters have placed their trust in us to lead, to improve their lives and to represent their interests. I believe that our term in office will be judged by the way we govern and by the results we achieve. I call this time a new beginning as our 19 legislators and I, your new county executive, have the opportunity to work together for the benefit of our entire County.

In my experience, the three “C’s” of leadership have done me well in every aspect of life.

The first is communication, which involves listening as well as speaking. It involves transparency as well as truthfulness. It requires a respectful tone as well as an open mind.

The second is collaboration, which recognizes that our success requires us to work together, to share responsibility, and to trust each other. Victory is achieved through teamwork and teamwork succeeds when we recognize that no one single person has all the answers.

The third is compromise which is how we achieve results rather than gridlock. Compromise is how everyone gets a win in their column, which ensures progress.

This is a time for a new beginning, a fresh approach and a new opportunity for Chautauqua County to grow and prosper. There will always be challenges, but together we can deliver the results that our citizens have asked us to achieve. This is an exciting time of new optimism and hope for the future as we set off on the next phase of our journey.

To the citizens of Chautauqua County, thank you for trusting us to get the job done.

Vince Horrigan is the Chautauqua County executive-elect.