|Volume LV||November 2008||Number 4|
Meet Brother Seeley...21-year-old Mayor of Linesville
Over the years, quite a few Masons have served as the Mayor of their local community, but it isn't likely that many of them were elected at age 18. When Bro. Christopher R. Seeley became a member of Pine Lodge No. 498, Linesville, in April of this year, just short of his 21st birthday, he had already served as Mayor of the Borough of Linesville for more than two years.
Bro. Seeley splits his time between pursuing a double major in political science and music at Allegheny College in Meadville and his duties as Mayor in Linesville, but manages to find time for fraternal activity by serving as the Scribe for Erie Chapter, Order of DeMolay.
In April, he was the subject of a documentary on "One of the World's Most Interesting Members of Generation Y" filmed by NHK, the Japan Broadcasting Company. The film crew followed his activities at college and at the borough to provide material for a serious program aimed at teaching young people how it is possible to make a difference in their communities.
Bro. Seeley has always been interested in local government and was surprised that many local residents didn't pay much attention to it. With a population of over 1,100 at the 2000 census, Linesville is a one-traffic-light town, but it also isn't without serious issues that need to be discussed and solved. It is a popular tourist location, primarily for Pymatuning Lake and the Linesville spillway, famous for its oversized carp, and known as "the place where ducks walk on the fishes' backs." It is also situated at a traveling mid-point, exactly 500 miles to Chicago and 500 miles to New York City.
When Bro. Seeley decided to run for mayor as a junior in high school, it was his personal goal to get more people to care about the way the business of Linesville was being administered. He won a contested election against a long-time, wellknown Linesville Borough Council Member. Interestingly, two other 18-year-olds were elected to serve in mayoral positions that day - one in Michigan and one in Iowa. His term as mayor will end on Dec. 31, 2009.
His family was very supportive when he decided to run for Mayor. He turned 18 just 54 days before the election. Earlier in the year, he was too young to circulate his own nominating petitions, so he convinced his parents to follow him on his door-to-door campaign. When he finished talking, they procured the signatures. He won the election by keeping voters focused on issues, and not his age.
He has a busy schedule and must be well-organized to fulfill his official duties while completing his studies, but he makes time for family and friends. In June, he visited Western Star Lodge No. 304 in Albion to be the Senior Master of Ceremonies for the conferral of the Master Mason Degree on three of his DeMolay brothers from Erie Chapter
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