Laurie Mullins announced on February 25 that she will be running for a seat on Vinton Town Council in the May 5 election. She made her announcement at Vinton’s New York Pizza restaurant to an exuberant crowd of family and friends.
Mullins has spent her entire life in Vinton, except for the four years she attended Virginia Tech to earn her Bachelor of Science degree in Horticulture in 1995.
“My parents moved to Dillon Woods in 1981,” said Mullins. “I attended Hardy Road Elementary and William Byrd Junior and High School (Class of 1991). My husband Tommy and I bought a house in Briarcliff when we got married. His family owns the Vinton Pawn Shop and we moved above it in 2010.
“We are building our dream home in Briarcliff with hopes to move in this summer,” Mullins said. “I have been blessed beyond measure to be a stay-at-home mom to Natalie, who is a junior at Byrd.
“During her elementary years at W.E. Cundiff, I volunteered in the classroom and held many positions on the PTA, including president for two years,” added Mullins. “I also served as PTA president at William Byrd Middle School.
“I enjoy supporting the William Byrd girls tennis team and am a member of the Roanoke Rail Yard Dawgs Booster Club. I have been active in the National Multiple Sclerosis Society through fundraising for several years. I am a member of Bedrock Church Roanoke since their beginning in 2011 when our meeting place was William Byrd Middle School,” said Mullins. “Natalie and I were actually baptized in the lobby!
“I have always loved Vinton– the feel of community, safety, the friendliness of the people, and cleanliness,” she continued. “Vinton is a great place to raise a family, and I would love for more families to stay here through the generations.
“My mother, Sandra Jacobs, retired from the town in 2012 after over 20 years of service,” said Mullins. “She instilled in me a love of the employees and how hard they work. The Public Works Department has a special place in my heart. Those guys work hard no matter the weather and conditions to keep our town clean and working flawlessly. Many citizens don’t realize that some of those men are on call for emergencies like water breaks and storm clean up over weekends and holidays. The snow removal in the town is second-to-none.
“I’m happy with the direction that the town is moving– new businesses and revitalization of the downtown area is wonderful,” Mullins said.
“I want to be on council because I care about our community wholeheartedly and I am at a time in my life that I can devote the time to do the best job for the present and future citizens of Vinton,” said Mullins. “I am eager to learn more about how the town works and represent the Town of Vinton with the dedicated and educated leaders of our town.
“Anyone who knows me knows that I tell you how I feel about many subjects,” said Mullins. “That being said, I am not going to act as a single vote on important topics to the citizens. I do not have an agenda. I am here to listen to the Vintonites and represent them to the best of my ability. I hope to be approachable to the citizens and open to all opinions. Many people may not be aware that candidates for council do not represent political parties. We all run as Independents because we are focused on local matters, not bi-partisan issues.”
In making the announcement of her run for office, Mullins thanked those who attended “for their signatures and their support. “Please come out on May 5 and vote for me. I will do my very best for the people in Vinton,” she said.
The Town of Vinton election is scheduled for Tuesday, May 5. The mayor’s seat and two council seats are up for election—the one held by Councilwoman Janet Scheid who is retiring from council and the one held by Vice Mayor Keith Liles, who is running for re-election. Mayor Brad Grose is also running for re-election, so far unopposed. Terms for the mayor and council members are for four years.