“I’m excited about working with the city council and about learning about politics,” she said.
However, Carter will take office Wednesday and immediately face everything from constituents’ concerns about city services, to dealing with a multi-million-dollar city budget.
“I’m a quick learner,” she said.
Carter, a political newcomer, won her council seat in November after some friends asked her to consider seeking the post being vacated by Earlene Graham.
She said she felt she was asked to run because “I do have a sense of community” and care about quality of life issues.
“I would like to be involved and see if we can’t have things in Hiram become more and more positive,” she said.
Constituents calling her with their concerns would not be a problem for her – though she is not anticipating a flood of calls, Carter said.
“I’m an old social worker so I’m used to people calling me and sharing their concerns,” said Carter, who works for Family Intervention Specialists in Hiram.
Carter moved from West Palm Beach, Fla., to Hiram in 2006 after visiting friends in the city over the course of four decades, she said.
Her community involvement has included serving as a board member of Family Alliance of Paulding, which assists families victimized by drug abuse and domestic violence.
Carter said she hoped to see a revival of the city’s historic downtown area – a traditional railroad village dating to the 1800s – after seeing it “kind of die” since the middle of the last decade.
“I’d like to see old, downtown Hiram come back to life. I’d like to see more stores there – just things to draw people to our downtown,” she said.
“I’d like to see families spend their evenings there. I’d like to see people shopping there. We’ve got a great restaurant there and some gift shops. I’d just like to see it be a destination for people to say, ‘Hey, let’s go to old downtown Hiram.’”
But she said she needed to learn a lot more details before deciding how she can help bring about such a transition to the area. The council recently has begun studying how to bring sewer service to the downtown area to attract more businesses.
“It’s my understanding we do need to update the sewer system [but] I’m a newbie, and I have a lot to learn,” Carter said.