Stacie Rye

As a former city council member for eight years, a county commissioner, someone who worked in nonprofits for 15 years, and now as someone who works in the business community, I wanted to write to offer a distinct perspective on the mayoral race.

Mike Nugent is uniquely qualified to be the mayor of Missoula. Mike runs a statewide company that oversees over 300 people. Mike's been on the city council for two years and this experience is invaluable to becoming mayor; I cannot overstate this.

I've seen Mike build coalitions, and I've seen Mike chair meetings that were like herding cats where he made people feel heard. I've never seen Mike compromise his beliefs with what's best for the community.

His private sector experience informs his decisions, it doesn't make them. It's offensive to see that insinuated over and over again. Missoula, we have a 45% homeownership rate. Let's not think that only subsidized housing is going to get us to the national average of home ownership, as much as we'd like to.

There's only one person with experience in private sector housing (Nugent) and the only one on council in many years. And we should ask the people who want to continue with the status quo candidate, why do they not value the right for people to live here?

Evaluate these candidates honestly, Missoula. Go look at this website Nugent is a once-in-a-generation candidate.