Election 2017--Tanya Waller, Cathlamet council 4


October 19, 2017

Diana Zimmerman

Tanya Waller, Council 4

Tanya Waller is one of two candidates vying for the Council member #4 position with the Town of Cathlamet.

A full time student for years, she has several associates degrees in various fields. She recently returned to school after a short break to work on a bachelor's degree in Archaeology.

She has worked in retail, and is currently co-owner of the Hotel Cathlamet.

"One of the best parts is getting to meet all manner of people from all over the world," Waller said. "Bicyclists traveling from Canada to San Diego stop here and by the time arrive, they get an idea they want to stop. And stay."

Waller loves her new town.

"It's so different from anywhere else I've been," she said. "I don't want to see the town die. It kind of seems to be heading that way. The canning businesses are gone, and the logging and fishing is getting less. There isn't much purpose for this little town on the river. I want to find a purpose. I want to wake it up again."

She would like to get the businesses involved.

"I think it has to start at a governmental level," Tanya said. "There seems to be a lack of communication between the people and the town. I think that gap needs to be closed. We need to talk to people and see what their concerns are. That doesn't seem to happen right now. The town doesn't seem to want us at their meetings. There was very little advertising about the budget meeting. I think transparency is important."

Waller sees her youth as an advantage. She wants to see positive change.

"I would like to liven up the town so that it can become a self sustaining entity," Waller said. "You have to work together. Sometimes an outsider's perspective is a good thing. Especially one that is of a younger generation, someone with ideas to bring people together."

She would like to see businesses stay open later. Visitors to the hotel have been known to arrive after 8 p.m. and ask for recommendations for dinner. Waller has had to send them to the market. She would also like to see activities for residents and visitors, of all ages.

"I think there needs to be some kind of sign on SR 4 that has a giant arrow," she laughed. "There are people who drive by who never stop into town. Later I'll hear that they thought that Gragg's was downtown. Or they take the exit by Sharon's and go to the marina. They never see Main Street."

"I'd like the town to thrive," Waller continued. "It may take longer than a four year term, but I'd like to see the town wake up again. I've seen pictures of the town from the past and it's bustling. I think the town should hold a public forum outside their regular meetings, just to listen to the community."


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