Incumbent, businessman vie for Council District 2October 30, 2018
By ALLEN LAMAN
Democrat incumbent Mary E. “Becky” Beckman and Republican challenger Darren Patterson are competing for a spot on the Dubois County Council.
Both are seeking the District 2 seat. The spot covers precincts 2 East, 2 West, 3 East, 4 North, 4 South, 5 South and 6 South in Bainbridge Township.
Beckman, 64, said she is proud of the work the council has completed during her first term.
“I ran because I’ve got some unfinished business,” she said. “But to tell you the truth, I am totally happy with what we have gotten done the past four years.”
Some of her proudest accomplishments on the council include revising the county’s tax abatement packages and being part of a county wage study. Growing the county’s population remains on her radar, as does working out the funding for building and staffing a new county jail. She said she’d like to ensure the county’s day-to-day services are “top-notch.”
Beckman expressed enthusiasm about the connectivity the proposed Mid-States Corridor could bring to the area, but also has concerns about the road because she said it has the potential to take the area’s workforce either north or south of Dubois County.
“There’s just a lot of concerns, and that’s where I think the next four years, working on issues of awareness ... that we’re on the lookout for our downtowns so they don’t die out, our small businesses so they don’t die out [and] our workforce stays here because we do have a lot to offer,” Beckman said.
Beckman has been the director of the Tri-Cap Retired and Senior Volunteer program since 2001. She actively serves on the Dubois County Tax Abatement Committee, Communication Committee, Solid Waste Management District Board, Courthouse Security Committee, and the newly formed Criminal Justice Assessment Committee.
She is involved with the Dubois County Public Health Partnership’s Mental Health and Aging Health Concerns sub-committees, the Dubois County Substance Abuse Council and Memorial Hospital and Health Care Center’s HOPE Garden.
She is a Court Appointed Special Advocate, is active with St. Joseph Catholic Church as a eucharistic minister, is a Light of the World
retreatant, a confirmation speaker and is part of Memorial Hospital’s Prayer and Presence Team.
Beckman graduated from Jasper High School in 1971 and the Indiana State University — Evansville Dental Assisting Program in 1975. She is also a graduate of the Vincennes University Jasper Campus Culinary Academy, the Certified Apartment Manager I and II, and the Dale Carnegie Course. She is one of 10 children born to the late O. Leo and Roselyn Beckman.
Beckman said the members of the county council don’t represent their political parties but the county as a whole, and that shows through the work they collaborate on.
Her challenger, Darren Patterson, 53, decided to run after seeing colleagues and friends — including Huntingburg Councilman Jeff Bounds, State Sen. Mark Messmer and State Rep. Steve
Bartels — take on active rolls in government. It’s something he’s wanted to do, too, and he looks at those men as role models.
“That’s one of the primary drivers,” Patterson said. “It’s been something I’ve wanted to do for some time, and finally I said, ‘I’m not getting any younger, so if I’m going to serve in this capacity, then I think it’s time.’”
He is the owner of The Mortgage Company of Southern Indiana Inc., which is a loan brokerage specializing in government-backed mortgages for first-time homeowners and veterans. He has over 23 years of experience in the banking and financial services industry.
If elected, Patterson would be a supporter for the Mid-States Corridor and would keep it on the front burner. He said the road would grow the community by bringing in new jobs and more families.
“I believe that future economic development is going to hinge on this new roadway,” he said. “When it comes through and where it comes through is to be determined, but we are in a unique position right now to have this roadway come though. And I believe all areas of local government — the cities as well as the county — really need to be singing from one page and really making sure that we have a loud voice ... and making sure that we don’t get this roadway pulled from underneath us like we did before at the state level.”
He’d also like to be an ambassador to new businesses that complement what is currently available in the county and add to the overall economic base. Patterson said he’s a good fit for the job because he is formally educated in economics and has the work experience to back it up.
Patterson graduated from Jasper High School in 1983 and served in the U.S. Army on active duty for three years after graduation. He served in Fort Carson, Colorado, and Heidelberg, Germany. After full-time military service, he attended Indiana University-Bloomington and earned degrees in business, economics and psychology. Additionally, his education includes master level studies in business and post-baccalaureate courses in accountancy.
“I believe my experience as a business owner, former soldier and community service leader will help me solve tough problems local government will often face,” Patterson said.
His community involvement includes membership on the Rotary Club of Jasper (founder and past-president), Jasper German Club (past-president), Jasper Kiwanis Club (past-president), and Team Red White and Blue, (veterans outreach director).
He is also a member of the American Legion Post 147, Jasper Outdoor Recreation, National Rifle Association and Holy Family Catholic Church.
Patterson and his wife, Dr. Ann Patterson, live in Jasper with their four children. He enjoys outdoor activities, such as hunting, fishing and shooting sports.
Other local races include:
• U.S. Senate (Mike Braun / Lucy Brenton / Joe Donnelly)
• District 8 U.S. Representative (Larry Bucshon / William Tanoos)
• Indiana Senate 47 (Erin Houchin / Nick Siler)
• Indiana House 63 (Joe Lannan / Shane Lindauer)
• Indiana House 74 (Steve Bartels / Larry Kleeman)
• Dubois County Sheriff (Tom Kleinhelter / Tim Lampert)
• Dubois County Clerk (Amy Kippenbrock / Kiersten Knies)
• Dubois County Recorder (Jackie McPherron / Gail Reutman)
• Dubois County Assessor (Eve Drew / Angie Giesler)
• Dubois County Council District 2 (Becky Beckman / Darren Patterson)
• Dubois County Council District 3 (Charmain Klem / Deborah Major)
• Cass Township Advisory Board (Lee Bilderback / Randy Boehm / Steve Eckert / Lisa Matthews)
• Patoka Township Trustee (Don Astrike / Jeff Summers)
• Madison Township Trustee (Scott Blazey / Brett Collignon)
• Southwest Dubois School Board (Jason Heile / Belinda Lange)
• Greater Jasper School Board (Jimmy Corbin / Ken Schnaus)
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