Lifelong Winslow Township resident Mayor Wright is proud of the changes since he took office five years ago
Winslow Township Barry Wright said he had always wanted to be mayor growing up.
The lifelong Winslow Township resident is a retired police lieutenant of 27 years and currently in his fifth year as mayor. He’s part-time, but he feels like it’s his full-time job and he wouldn’t have it any other way.
“I love it,” the father of seven said with a smile.
Before he ran for mayor, he said Winslow Township was a divided community and wanted to keep things the way they were.
“Winslow was ready for a change,” said Wright.
He said he knocked on thousands of doors when he first ran for mayor, the old way to get someone’s vote.
“When you knock on someone’s door, they can tell if you’re sincere,” he said. “People would ask me, if you become mayor, are you going to lower my taxes? I would say absolutely not, and if anybody tells you they are, they are lying to you. What I will do is stabilize your taxes through different measures I had and I’ve been able to do that.”
When he won the election, he unseated a mayor who held that position for 16 years.
“We’ve been able to turn things around,” he explained. “I said our diversity can be our strength and we’ve been able to do that now. “It’s so important to understand each other cultures, customs and religions.” he said.
He also says its very important to treat people the way you wanted to be treated.
“I don’t believe in negativity,” he said. “The way you treat people comes back,” he said. “A lot of people in town knew I was always fair as a police officer. I treated everyone the same way and that comes back.”
Under his leadership, he decreased the number of employees of the police department but said the crime rate went down. He said even with less employees, there are more men and women on the streets than before by reorganizing the department, bringing in new leadership and utilizing resources.
The cops are also interacting with the community more, especially the kids with their “Adopt a Cop” program. Every fourth grade class in the elementary schools have a police officer assigned to them.
He also implemented a program for residents to get problems fixed, fast.
“You can have an app on your phone called ‘GORequest,” he said. “If you see a pothole on the road, take a picture, send it to us and then track the progress of it getting repaired.”
It’s obvious to see he loves this town and everything it has to offer.
“You got to love what you do, and that I do.”