To the editor:

In the last three years, I have volunteered for the City of Angola Arts Council, Angola’s Indiana Main Street, and served on the Angola’s Hometown Collaborative Initiative (HCI). Though I will always have part of my heart in Auburn, and love, love to visit friends, shop, and worship, they say, “you must bloom where you are planted.” In my volunteer efforts helping the Angola downtown, inevitably, I’m watching what Auburn is doing. And specifically, Sarah Payne.

I didn’t really know Sarah much while at DeKalb back in the mid ’90s, other than we had some mutual friends. Fast forward to 3-4 years ago when I decided that servitude in my local town was something I wanted to do. (I wonder where that might be coming from? — Love you Mom!) Every time I had a question or a concern about Main Street or projects such as HCI, I could count of Sarah to explain. In working with Sarah, at no time is there a sense of competition, or unwillingness to be helpful. She is extremely knowledgeable on what’s going on, and if she doesn’t know, she’ll find out.

In the last several years, Sarah’s amount of time she gives the community of Auburn as a volunteer is mind-blowing. There would be days I would be in Jeremiah’s coffee shop, and Sarah would have meeting after meeting, moving from one to the other with poise and strength. She can connect people and make things happen. She is so very approachable, inspires others and has already made an impact in Auburn. The people of Auburn probably already recognize some of her accomplishments, already see, that being a woman is not a weakness and already know she is devout in her Catholic faith.

I hope Auburn knows how lucky they are to have a Sarah. I am a Republican, and I value honesty, leadership, energy, and innovation that can help propel Auburn to the next level. As Bill Gates stated, “As we look ahead into the next century, leaders will be those who empower others.” Sarah Payne does this, just talk to her.

Colleen McNabb-Everage

Lake James, Angola

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