By Nikki Garrett Metzger
High Desert Daily
(Hesperia) – Each time I have spoken with Mike Leonard he is always very unassuming and easy to talk to. He never strikes me as a “politician” with a prepared speech or certain talking points. He just seems like a normal guy.
That’s how it was when I spoke to him after his win for a seat on the Hesperia City Council. He said he was pretty tired, but ready to get back to the work of moving the city forward.
When asked what he was looking forward to, Leonard said, “Just continuing with the projects the City has going on, like the Ranchero Underpass that is a little ahead of schedule, and the Ranchero Interchange on which SANBAG recently awarded the bid to Security Paving and is waiting for approval from the Board of Supervisors.”
Leonard faced some hard opposition and criticism during this campaign, but he took it all in stride, “There was a guy here in town that came out really hard against myself and against Eric Smith, Chris Everett. But things worked out, and the three of us ended up with the most votes.”
This will be Leonard’s third term on the Hesperia City Council. He said that he spent modestly on his campaign, less, he explained, than in his campaign in 2008. He first ran for office in 2004 as he prepared to retire from the San Bernardino County Fire Department.
During his two terms in office he has seen the completion of the new city center including the new police department, the new fire station, the completion of the Target shopping center on Main Street, the opening of the Walmart Supercenter on Main, and the construction of the theaters near the library.
But Leonard isn’t looking back, “We’ll keep the City of Hesperia moving forward. There is still a lot to do.”
Although he did stop to reflect on those that helped him during the campaign, “I am really appreciative for all of the hard work that Smitty (Thurston Smith) and his wife did. Also Russ Blewitt and everyone who supported me in this election,” Leonard said.