Shady Shores Mayor, Cindy Aughinbaugh, has proudly served in her role since 2015 and bases her life on a cornerstone inscribed with one word….Involvement.
Cindy and husband, Steve, moved to Shady Shores in 2008. She already knew a great deal about volunteering her time and efforts through PTA (Parents and Teachers Association), Boy Scouts, and various booster clubs. But things felt different in Shady Shores. Cindy found herself wanting to do more than volunteer. She wanted close involvement with her community. She wanted to give back.
Cindy has a degree in industrial engineering and management from Oklahoma State University and worked in software and management for 30 years. With that background, there surely must be a number of ways for her to serve Shady Shores.
Word got around about Cindy, and some of her new friends and neighbors encouraged her to run for election in the 2010 city council race.
“That was really weird,” Cindy laughed. “I’d never campaigned for anything even remotely political, and it was quite an experience. I was elected and also appointed Mayor Pro Tem. Next, I was appointed Mayor in 2015.” Cindy has remained Mayor of Shady Shores since then, winning fair and square through elections. By now, the campaigning process seems a bit less weird and, at the moment, she’s leaning toward going for another term in 2023.
“The first thing I learned is government has operating rules that are totally different from a corporation,” Cindy said. “The second thing I learned was things happen very slowly. It didn’t take long to realize that most issues we deal with are the ones affecting our day-to-day lives – when will the potholes on my street be fixed? When will the drainage problem be resolved? I beg residents to please, please come to council meetings. Be involved with your community. Become familiar with the issues and how things work. Be a part of what’s happening, and don’t rely on social media misinformation.”
Any advice for other ladies who might like to step into the political pool?
“Never be intimidated because you have as much to offer, if not more, than the next person,” Cindy stressed. “I’m a female Mayor with five male council members! Be professional and stick to the issues. Be genuine. The whole point is I care. I enjoy helping to make this town better. Neither I, nor anyone else, can make those contributions without being involved.”
photos courtesy of Cindy Aughinbaugh