Bowdre Takes Tyler City Council District 2 Spot
By JACQUE HILBURN-SIMMONS
Longtime Tyler minister Darryl Bowdre emerged Saturday from a three-way race to claim the District 2 seat on the Tyler City Council.
Bowdre, 54, faced the Rev. Charles Burns, 45, and retired software developer Sarah Coats, 59, to secure the office, held by outgoing Councilman Donald Sanders, who was unable run again due to term limits.
The victor said he wants to continue the successes of his predecessors.
"I thank God for the victory, my family for their patience and endurance and the voters of District 2 for their support," he said. "I would also like to thank Pastor Burns and Ms. Coats for a very dignified race. We all had a good time and it's time to get to work. I'm ready."
Complete but unofficial totals show Bowdre received 125 votes, for 51.9 percent of the ballots, compared to Burns' 50 votes, 20.8 percent, and Ms. Coats' 66 votes, 27.4 percent.
The west district encompasses portions of the city's north and west sides and includes longtime communities of Butler College, White City and St. Louis area, and newer areas, such as the Cascades.
In spite of economic challenges, Bowdre said the current city leaders have led Tyler in a frugal, conservative manner, and he plans to continue those efforts.
He said he wants to be a part of the team that continues this process, using as a guide the community-driven Tyler 21 plan, help foster development while keeping a healthy balance for families.
Bowdre, who leads the SouthCentral Church of Christ, said he loves Tyler and wants it to remain the metropolitan hub of East Texas.
"I pledge to continue to help it become the place where families can grow and where business can flourish," he said earlier. "I desire for Tyler, Texas, to be a place where people from all walks of life can call it home and a place we can all be proud of.
In addition to his role in the ministry, Bowdre serves on the boards of the Tyler Area Chamber of Commerce, Tyler Economic Development, Tyler Convention and Visitors Bureau, and Tyler Civil Service. He also serves on the Smith County Tax Abatement Committee
He has twice been honored with Texas School Bell awards from the Texas State Teachers Association and others for his editorial writing, his biography indicated.
He has worked as a radio news director and broadcast commentator. He founded and published two newspapers in East Texas. He is a former board member of PATH, North Tyler Child Development Center and Tyler Independent School District.
The candidate also helped establish and lead the Tyler Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce as well as the Bi-Partisan African-American Coalition, a voting rights and voter education organization that began the 1980s.
Bowdre devoted 36 years to the ministry, mostly in Tyler, and raised his family here, with Lynn, his wife of more than 34 years.
The couple has three children and four grandchildren.
The candidate attended Southwestern Christian College in Terrell, John Carroll University in Cleveland, Ohio, and held positions of leadership in several churches, including 17 years as minister for Tyler's North Tenneha Church.