Published Endorsements

Below are some of the letters to the editor published in support of Gary Howe for City Commission.

DingbatsI am voting for Gary Howe.

When Gary Howe served on the Parks and Recreation Commission, he helped our neighborhood, unofficially named Orchard Heights, develop a plan for Clancy Park. He answered our questions, met on-site, networked with local talent and made sure we were not forgotten. Our neighborhood would not be implementing our vision for this city park without his leadership, support and encouragement.

Howe supports parks. I plan to support Gary Howe.

Sarah Naperala, Traverse City


I’m writing to express my support for Gary Howe for City Commission. I haven’t seen Gary kiss any babies, but I do know that my own kids, ages 10 and 11 years, have idolized him since last summer when he walked them through Traverse City and taught them how to safely cross the crosswalks. Gary is smart, compassionate and serious about knowing his stuff, a true champion for community.

Perhaps most importantly, he’s willing to listen to opinions divergent from his own and is passionate about good public process. Invite him to coffee and see for yourself.

Amy Martin. Traverse City


I endorse Gary Howe for City Commission; here’s why:

Gary has demonstrated that he’s committed to an ethical approach regarding land use, public space, and pedestrian and cycling rights.

Gary’s views on local government and its respective role in local economics are centered on innovative and sustainable management of our impressive local-talent base.

Howe’s approach to community development and engagement is refreshing in today’s political climate. He’s done more than many to inform and encourage political participation and isn’t even a commissioner yet.

I believe Gary’s voice can only strengthen our Commission.

Patrick Daly, Traverse City


I’m a grumpy baby boomer generally disheartened by a world I see spiraling toward joylessness, fear, and environmental disaster. That’s why I support Gary Howe. He’s a citizen of the world, a community advocate, and my colleague at Northwestern Michigan College. When he stops by my office I’m reminded that the better world I hope for starts right here in Traverse City. It starts with thoughtful decisions we make about how we get around, recreate, interact with one another, and treat the environment. He gets it.

Gary Howe would be a great city commissioner.

Regis McCord, Williamsburg


Join me in voting for Gary Howe for City Commission. I have known Gary for 10 years and in that time seen his passion for the city mature. He has grown by listening to the public and fellow commissioners as both a planning commissioner and as a parks and recreation commissioner. We can trust Gary to shape his opinions by studying the issues and engaging the public, just as he has done with his community blog. Vote for Gary, a visionary who can take our great place and make it better.

Bob Otwell, Traverse City


Gary Howe is thoughtful and knowledgeable about issues facing Traverse City. As an involved citizen, he has served on the Parks and Recreation Commission and is a member of the Planning Commission. To understand issues Gary researches, attends conferences, visits like-minded communities and talks to local citizens and experts for input.

He will work diligently to guarantee your city stays viable and vibrant for future generations. He is accessible and will represent all levels of the community. Gary will provide the leadership and vision TC needs.

Visit to learn more. Vote Gary Howe for City Commission Nov. 5.

Mike and Rita Sleeman, Traverse City


I support Gary Howe for City Commissioner because he has been a supporter of Traverse City’s creative class and has helped foster and support the city’s young entrepreneurs. At the local level I’m a single-issue voter; I want to see Traverse City attract and retain young professional talent and continue with sustainable economic development so that we never again have to hear the chiche “half my pay is a view of the bay.” Gary Howe understands that economic development not only means supporting existing business, but it also means supporting the entrepreneurial environment.

John Di Giacomo, Traverse City


Gary Howe has my vote for City Commissioner. We need his vision for the future of Traverse City, his capacity to welcome diverse opinions when problem solving, and his skills at building community. He has a deep commitment to making this great place even better for everyone. Please consider voting for Gary Howe.

Mary Van Valin, Traverse City


Tim Werner, Gary Howe or Ross Richardson? Oh, wait, we can vote for all three. Whew! Having three open City Commission seats saves us from an agonizing choice between these talented, forward thinking, and intelligent leaders. We have known Tim, Gary, and Ross for several years. They support our values of safe neighborhoods, complete streets, green parks, pristine waters, sound economics, friendly bike routes, vibrant public spaces, and a well connected city designed for people. Please join us in supporting Werner, Howe, and Richardson on Nov. 5.

Ty and Johanna Schmidt, Traverse City


Gary Howe represents the type of committed, educated professional we need in local leadership. He brings a global awareness to the local level with an ability to intuitively connect the decisions before us locally to the larger picture of a quickly changing nation and world. The future will bring unexpected challenges. Howe represents the clear- and open-minded type of elected official we need to keep Traverse City the vibrant community it is, and to build a resilient community ready for the changes ahead.

Vote Gary Howe for TC City Commission.

Dave Barrons, Traverse City


While a resident of Traverse City, I worked with Gary Howe in establishing the community’s first off-leash dog park. As a Traverse City Parks and Recreation Commissioner, he enthusiastically took on the responsibility of working with the volunteers to make the park a reality. He helped us create a proposal, run public input meetings, get  approval, and raise over $20,000. Not one to just show up at a monthly meeting, Gary works diligently and cooperatively with businesses, government and citizens to make Traverse City a better place to live.Gary Howe would make an excellent City Commissioner.

Jami Moore, Suttons Bay


Gary Howe has been a community leader and civic contributor in countless ways. We’ve known him as a voice for inclusive local government that is forward thinking and based on supporting Traverse City residents and their shared set of public service values and priorities. Please join us in electing Gary to the Traverse City Commission where his thoughtful, respectful, reasoned voice will engage all of us as citizens to help ‘make our great place even better!’

Tom and Diane Emling, Traverse City


I would like to encourage Traverse City voters to consider Gary Howe for the Traverse City Commission. Gary has already demonstrated his commitment to Traverse City by serving on the Planning Commission and the Parks and Recreation Board. Gary is concerned and engaged, and listens to people and works to find common ground so that everyone is part of the solution.

I am excited about Gary’s vision and ideas and would love to see him on the City Commission so he can work towards making Traverse City an even greater and more liveable city.

Michael Kroes, Traverse City


I’m voting for Gary Howe for a strong Traverse City. It’s not because he advocates for bicycling and pedestrian infrastructure. It’s not because he believes in a community of diverse people making a difference, or that he’s dedicated to making a difference. It’s because Gary Howe gets it. He’s a good listener, a learner, he’s respectful, and he knows all this contributes to sound economic development for this city. Furthermore, Gary Howe is reasonable. And considering the political antics in Washington and elsewhere, reason is not to be underestimated in the halls of government.

Bill Palladino, Traverse City


I am privileged to personally know and support two candidates for City Commission in this next election, Gary Howe and Tim Werner. Both are intelligent and informed citizens who strive to fully understand the ins and outs of every issue using facts, experts, tested methodology, and sound reason before making judgment.

Both are also the first to challenge their own preconceived opinions or personal biases. If you want honest, smart, and easily approachable elected officials working for Traverse City’s best interests, please consider Tim Werner and Gary Howe.

Bill Clark, Traverse City