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Mayor Tate with City Council membrs Rich Constantine, Larry Carr, Caitlin Robinett Jachimowicz and Rene Spring. Getting Into Government “The results of the building boom were apparent in Morgan Hill,” Steve said. “Sewers were overflowing. Schools were in double session. I was interest- ed in land use issues and wanted to get involved. I became known as a ‘slow growther.’ After four years I got a spot on the City Planning Commission.” Steve served on the commission from 1991 through 1998 while working at IBM. He led two campaigns to extend the Redevelopment Authority—the second was successful. It not only paid for the Community & Cultural Center, Centennial Recreation Center, and Aquatics Center, but also partially financed Morgan Hill’s new library and the construction of Butterfield Boulevard. “I’d never thought about becoming a politician,” he said, “but after seven years on the commission, making recommendations to City Council, I thought it’d be even better to be on the council and have the final say!” Steve won a seat and served on the Morgan Hill City Council from 1999 to 2004 while still working at IBM. During those years, Dennis Kennedy, a former IBM engineer, served as Morgan Hill’s mayor. 48 City Managers Weigh In Former City Manager Ed Tewes said that hearing Steve talk about restoring respect, civility, and progress to city government influenced his decision to go to work for Morgan Hill. “He sought to involve everyone in the life and future of the community. I saw him as an independent thinker who could always clearly articulate his justification for controversial votes, even when in the minority.”   According to Steve Rymer, also a former City Manager, “We were fortunate Steve was in the position of mayor to guide us in satisfying the state and county demands of the RDA settle- ment while protecting our community’s best interests.” “He also championed our work to establish community recreation programs for youth, families, and seniors. Steve has never been just the mayor. He’s a very caring person and it comes through in his decisions and actions.” Morgan Hill’s current City Manager, Christina Turner, first worked with Mayor Tate while she was employed by the City of Gilroy and they were both serving on the South County Youth Gang Taskforce. GILROY • MORGAN HILL • SAN MARTIN december 2018-january 2019 “Mayor Tate is no armchair mayor,” Christina said. “He has spent an extraordinary amount of time on city business and been very present at City Hall, in the community, and at meetings with stakeholders at regional and state levels to advocate for Morgan Hill and South County.” “He has this amazing institutional knowledge and a very sharp memory, which make him a great resource.” “He’s worked closely with city staff, the school district, law enforcement, the Chamber of Commerce and other organizations to maximize efforts on issues like economic development, school construction projects, and public safety.” “The Mayor has been a consensus builder when it comes to the RDCS, which has been in place since 1978. Never one to resist change, he’s been open to finding better and more efficient ways of doing things. Our adoption of clean renewable energy and water conservation initiatives are great examples of this.” Reason, Ethics and Leadership in Action Greg Sellers said when he and Steve were running for City Council in 1998, “the council had been struggling with controversy and turmoil. In the community there was a sense of, enough is enough. With his reputation as a reasoned, respected leader on the Planning Commission, Steve was favored to win. People saw me as the new guy and said, ‘Good to see you involved, maybe next time.’” “Steve has always said, ‘Whatever is best for Morgan Hill, regardless of your point of view. It’s our job to make sure the community benefits,’” Greg said. “Folks take for granted how smoothly things have gone; not because everyone is marching in lockstep, but due to the consistent, strong leadership our city has enjoyed while he’s been in office. His way of thinking and leading is par- ticularly important in this day and age.” As Morgan Hill’s Communications and Engagement Manager, Maureen Tobin works at the intersection of city staff, city council, and the community. gmhtoday.com