Members of the Oxford community came together yesterday to recognize outgoing Mayor Pat Patterson for his public service. Patterson has spent the last 16 years in local government, including two terms as Mayor. Hosted at the Oxford Conference Center, Patterson thanked the community for allowing him to serve the town in which he grew up. Patterson then went on to recognize the many other public servants who have assisted him during his time in office.
On hand to honor the man who hired her to become the town’s tourism director in 1995 was Oxford’s Mayor-Elect, Robyn Tannehill. Tannehill thanked Patterson for his leadership, generosity and his willingness to work with her during the transition into her new role.
“Pat Patterson is one of the most generous people I know,” Tannehill said. “He has a servant’s heart; he has given so much of his time and energy to this community. He has made a difference as an alderman and as a mayor, and whether you agree with him or not, he always has Oxford’s best interests at heart. I’ve been honored to serve with him and learn from him along the way.”
District 12 Rep. Jay Hughes reflected on Patterson’s style of leadership, and despite several disagreements, Hughes knew that Patterson’s heart was in the right place.
“There’s been no one serving Oxford whose had had his heart in the right place more than Pat. Sometimes his heart and his mouth didn’t connect right,” Hughes said with a laugh. “He’s been amazing at preserving the past while remembering that the future is important while giving 100 percent to Oxford. He and I didn’t always get along, but the end result was usually a good one when we came to an agreement.”
Alderman-At-Large John Morgan spoke about what Patterson has taught him during his time working alongside him.
I learned how address issues head on from Pat,” Morgan said. “A lot of times in politics, people try to ease around the issues and not give straight answers, and Pat would always give you a straight answer whether you like it or not.”
Morgan presented Patterson with a plaque that will be placed on a bench to honor his service. The bench will be placed on the Oxford Square bearing the quote below.
When all was said and done, Patterson appreciated the support he has received.
“It’s an honor that people came,” Patterson said. “I was privileged to serve people, and I believe in public service, particularly on a local level.”
Robyn Tannehill will be inaugurated on June 29th at 10:00 a.m. On his first day off, Patterson ensured that he will be doing exactly what he wants to do.
“I’m not going to anywhere anybody else wants me to be,” Patterson said. “If you see me somewhere that’s because I want to be there.”
Steven Gagliano is the managing editor of HottyToddy.com. He can be reached at email@example.com.