Mayor Jones begins fourth term


Kathleen Cook, Editor in Chief

For the majority of our lives, Vivian Jones has been the mayor of Wake Forest. This past November, Jones was elected to her fourth consecutive term.
“It’s really an honor to be elected that many times and for people to continue to want me to be their mayor,” Jones said. “I’m just really excited about being able to continue in this.”
Before Jones became the mayor, she was on the Wake Forest Board of Commissioners for two years.
“It was very humbling to think that a decision you make can have a huge affect on people’s lives,” Jones said. “I learned to study the issues and listen to the citizens before deciding how I was going to vote.”
Jones wanted to become mayor so she could become a good role model.
“I wanted us to have a positive leader who would try to build relationships and help the community to progress,” Jones said.
A few years ago, Wake Forest implemented a bus system. Jones believes this to be her proudest achievement so far in her time as mayor.
“Early on I realized that we have a lot of people in our community who didn’t have access to a car, so I started going to meetings about public transportation,” Jones said. “It does make a difference in people’s lives, and I’m very proud of that.”
Jones has also been working to enhance the art community in Wake Forest. The town was recently able to purchase the Tuxedo Junction next to the new bowling alley, and she has turned that into the Wake Forest Renaissance Center.
The Renaissance Center will hold performances, art shows and meetings.
“It’ll be sort of like a mini convention center. The main thing is it will give us more cultural offerings,” Jones said. “I think it will really offer a lot to the community.”
Jones hopes that local schools can use the Renaissance Center as well.
“We’re going to be doing a lot and try to involve all of the local schools and give them the opportunity to come and perform,” Jones said.
Something that Jones wants to have is more youth-centered activities.
“I think we do have a large youth population. That’s one of the things that I wish and hope that we can do is to have more things that the youth can be more involved in,” Jones said. “Send me an e-mail and tell me what you’d like to see. I’d love to be able to do some things that the youth really want. I don’t know what those things are. I don’t have youth around my house to tel

me what they want.”
Jones used to have two children around her house, but they graduated in 1984 and 1989.
“My kids helped me understand teens better, the things they wanted to do, and why they wanted to do them,” Jones said. “I was not in a political situation at that time, but I believe if I had been, they would have had a big influence on how I approached things for teens.”
Though not regularly around teens, the mayor can give some pointers for teens looking to get into the local government.
“My advice is to be involved in your community. Pay attention to your local government, what they are doing and the issues they are dealing with,” Jones said. “Before I ran for the Town Board, I attended every Town Board meeting and Planning Board meeting for one year. When I was elected, I already was aware of the issues the board was dealing with and the usual stand the board members would take. It made joining the board much easier.”
Jones hopes to see the town prosper in the upcoming years.
“I’d love for us to have enough jobs that our youth, after you’ve graduated from college, that you all want to come back and work in Wake Forest,” Jones said. “I’d love to say that a lot of our students want to come back and live in Wake Forest.”