Shake hands with Jack Thomas, Park City’s new mayor who will take office on January 1, 2014. A local with roots that can be traced to Park City’s silver mining era, Mayor Thomas is a bona fide Parkite through and through. An upbringing grounded in hard work and self-reliance, his education in planning and architecture, and years of dedicated public service make him an ideal leader of our city at this particular point in history.

“For me, leadership is about vision. I’ve seen complex challenges evolve into opportunities for productive solutions when met with even just one committed individual. My vision for Park City is a small, tight-knit community that is infused with metropolitan sophistication and cutting-edge social strategies. There’s something about this place that attracts the best and the brightest, and I plan on maximizing our resources to find creative solutions to our challenges.”

Many of Jack’s ancestors were miners in the famed Silver King Mine and many of their descendants remained in Utah. Jack spent his summers in Park City during the 1950s and skied the first runs that opened in 1963. In the 1970s, he helped map Old Town for the power company and began his successful architectural career here in 1981. He began serving on the Planning Commission in 2004, giving him a depth of knowledge only experience can offer.

Mayor Thomas feels it’s his responsibility to use his experience as an architect and planner to help guide Park City when considering many of the major development proposals that are on the horizon by ensuring they are in line with the community’s core values. “We are a small town first and a ski resort second. This creates priorities in planning and development that differ widely from other ski resort towns.

Within our city limits, less than 10% of the buildable land is still available for development. We need to choose very wisely how we use that remaining resource so that we preserve our small town character and natural setting.”

One of Mayor Thomas’ focal points is inclusive opportunity for all economic sectors. “Park City’s diversity is expanding exponentially, and I’m committed to bringing the locals of varied backgrounds even closer together. One of Parkites’ hallmarks is an eclectic citizenry who equally embraces and supports each other. The only priority on which none of us will budge is protection of the environment. I plan on leading Park City to help set a national standard for healthy, sustainable, highly livable communities.”

Mayor Thomas has his work cut out for him during this inaugural term. Local issues of economics, development, transportation, and water loom large. However, he is ready to hit the ground running come January first. “I have set my sights high, and I expect wonderful things to happen. With an engaged citizenry and focused leadership, we can grow our resort economy while preserving the core values of our community and enhancing our mountain environment.”

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