DRYDEN — There’s a two-person race for the village’s Council President job. The candidates are incumbent Elizabeth Thiemkey and challenger Alen Graham.
Whoever gets the most voters will earn a four-year term.

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Alen Graham said he’s running for the opportunity to serve as village president because he enjoys serving others and has been asked by people within the community to throw his hat in the ring.

As a local business owner, he feels that his business experience will be beneficial while serving in the elected role.
He explained, “Being the Village President is a lot like running a business. I’ve successfully run my own business for many years. Being a member of the DDA and attending council meetings has helped me be in touch with the needs of our community.

“As president of the Dryden Chamber of Commerce, I understand the needs of businesses in the area too.”

Graham’s focus as President would include lowering taxes. Additionally, he shared, “I think we should work at keeping spending down and always be looking for innovative ideas. It’s also important to me that I be available for our residents and be aware of their concerns. I would have an open door policy. I want people to feel free to stop by my office or schedule a time that’s best for them.”

Graham is President of the Dryden Chamber
of Commerce and a Member of the Downtown Development Authority (DDA) and Veterans Hall.

“I truly love this community and I hope they give me the opportunity to serve it as their
Village President,” he added.

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Elizabeth Thiemkey is running for another term as the Village of Dryden President.
Thiemkey has fond memories of Dryden, and shared her love for the community.

“My father owned the Chuck Wagon Restaurant here in Dryden from 1964-1980. I spent much of my teen years working for him and a lot of time with the people here in Dryden. And as such when my children were young, I moved back to Dryden and they all graduated from Dryden High School. I may not have been born here, but I feel that Dryden has always been my home.”

Thiemkey hopes that by continuing her work as the Village President, she will be able to complete additional projects in the works, saying, “I decided to run for President to make a difference. In the past four years, we have completed a major road/storm drain project, which included a renovation of the Downtown District. The project was paid for
with grant money and MDOT loans. There is more improvement needed as we need to focus on repairing our remaining streets and sidewalks. I hope to be able to complete these projects with grant money. I do not want to and will try not raise taxes to do these projects.”

Thiemkey’s service to the community has included being a member of the Dryden Downtown Development/Planning Commission for 10 years, serving as Secretary/Treasurer and Chairperson, also serving on the Village Council for 12 years. She has also been a member of the Dryden Fall Festival Committee.

She retired in 2011 from PNC Bank after a 28-year career and is currently working as a substitute teacher for the Lapeer County Community Schools and says she enjoys helping her students learn.

“I hope to continue to serve the Village of Dryden as President. Together, we can bring our small community back.”