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Two Seats Available On Oakdale Council
Oak city

Three candidates have thrown their hats in the ring, seeking two available four-year terms on the Oakdale City Council. Election Day is Tuesday, Nov. 8 though many people will mail in their ballots prior to that date. Incumbent Christopher Smith and challengers Kayleigh Gilbert and Benjamin Amaral are seeking the seats. This is an at-large election; the top two candidates in the vote totals will win the seats.

Oakdale Mayor Cherlyn Bairos is also on the ballot but is running unopposed.

The Leader posed a few questions to the council candidates; following are their responses, with candidates listed in alphabetical order.



Candidate Benjamin Amaral did not respond to the request for answers to the questions posed by The Leader.



Why are you running for city council?

I was asked by my Soroptimist president to start attending city council meetings to keep our Soroptimist sisters informed about what is going on in our city. After attending the meetings, I realized a great portion of our community wasn’t being reached after reading posts on local Facebook groups. I want everyone to feel welcome to be a part of our city. I want our small business to have a voice. I am easy to reach and can save anyone a seat next to me. I believe I can help promote our city more on social media.

What are your qualifications for the position?

The qualities I believe I can contribute to our City Council are I am a woman of my word; if I say I am going to be there I will be. I am energetic and I love our city. I always want to help promote our service clubs, small businesses, and events on social media. I am accessible. If you have a question regarding anything going on in our city that I know about I do not hesitate to hand out my phone number.

Someone should vote Kayleigh Gilbert for Oakdale City Council 2022 because I am energetic and enthusiastic about helping our community. I believe if you want anything good to happen to your community you have to step up and help serve that same community. I am currently an Oakdale Soroptimist board member, Oakdale Chamber Ambassador, Advisor of the S Club at OHS, marketing committee member for Visit Oakdale, CVAR Oakdale, creator of Oakdale Young Professionals. I believe it is very important to be involved in the community you live in. I can offer a young non-partisan perspective when voting on issues. I believe in researching each item on the agenda and voting after being well educated on the issue at hand. I also believe I can make everyone in our community feel welcomed at our City Council meetings.

What do you see as the two most important issues facing the city?

I believe the two largest issues facing the city at this time is our downtown improvement. I know many business owners are concerned how this will affect their business on Third Avenue. They need to know the City of Oakdale is there for them. I also believe affordable housing is another big issue in our town. We want to be able to keep the new generation in Oakdale and have them be able to purchase homes.



Why are you running for city council?

I’m running for city council (again) to give back to Oakdale, which has given me 20+ years of opportunity, safety, and community to raise my son and to enjoy a great, affordable life.

What are your qualifications for the position?

My qualifications include having served on the city council, and 11 related boards and committees, for the past four years, being appointed Mayor Pro Tem by the last two, and a lifelong commitment of volunteering, including for the Lion’s Club gatherings, Oakdale’s Thanksgiving Dinners, Oakdale Rescue Mission, in-classroom teacher’s helpers, PTC, Love Oakdale, and several other volunteer events and committees.

What do you see as the two most important issues facing the city?

There are many important issues that Oakdale must address. The two most important issues facing Oakdale, in my opinion, are:

1: The dearth of affordable housing options, not only for low-income residents, but also for single and two-wage earning families who want to work and live in Oakdale, but can’t because they are priced out of the local housing market, and are unable to find apartments to rent;

2: The crisis that we will soon face regarding our water supply, and the continued increasing need for more without the guarantee of having sufficient supplies to meet that need.