Tom McMasters’ win in his backyard keyed his victory in Tuesday’s Huber Heights mayoral race.
McMasters, 51, unseated incumbent and longtime city official Ron Fisher 52 percent to 48 percent to lead the city of Huber Heights — the third largest suburb in the region with a population of more than 38,000 residents.
McMasters, who lives in Ward 6, won the ward’s three precincts by a combined 347 votes. In the overall race, he defeated Fisher by 253 votes. McMasters and Fisher each won 11 of the 22 precincts.
McMasters said he went door-to-door in the surrounding neighborhoods before the election, in addition to going to the Ward 6 polls on Tuesday to talk to people.
“All my neighbors know I’m dedicated to the city,” said McMasters, who ran three previous times for public office and was defeated each time.
McMasters will be sworn in on or after Jan. 1, 2014, according to Anthony Rodgers, Huber Heights clerk of council. He is the sixth mayor in the city’s history.
Fisher, 65, did not return a message seeking comment Wednesday.
During his campaign, McMasters said city leaders lacked transparency when they planned multimillion-dollar projects, like the $7.5 million Kroger Aquatic Center at The Heights and the $18 million music center.
McMasters said voters took that message to heart.
“My priority has always been to try to get the information that people need to make good decisions out to the public,” he said. “We want public comments, so we can pull out the really good ideas that come out of it. We want to make this as efficient as possible.”
McMasters, a Huber Heights resident since 2006, retired from the Air Force in 2009 and works at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base as a support contractor.
Huber Heights resident Susan Calhoun said she voted for McMasters because he’s civic-minded and honest. She said she does not know much about Fisher, but said McMasters would be more visible in the community.
“He’s the perfect example of someone who puts his mind to do something and then does it,” Calhoun said.
Fisher, a real estate broker with Fisher & Associates Realty, has been mayor since November 2008, and served as vice mayor in 1988 and 2008. He also was on council from 1986-89 and 2004-08, according to his bio on the city’s website.
Fisher has said the success of the Carriage Trails housing development, aquatic center and music center are recent examples of the city taking positive steps to be a leader in the region. He previously said he would not seek re-election in four years if he had won another term.
Vice Mayor Mark Campbellsaid he’s not concerned about the direction of the city because “we don’t have carloads of people coming to our meetings saying negative things about what we’re doing.”
“We have a big job to do,” Campbell said. “We need to be the go-to destination of northern Montgomery County and the surrounding regions. That’s what we’re doing and will continue to do.”
Past mayors of Huber Heights
Gerald J. Rigot, Jr.: June 1981-Dec. 1983*
Richard F. Shomper: Jan. 1984-Dec. 1985
Rodney B. Beach: Jan. 1986-Dec. 1988
Sherwin R. Eisman: Jan. 1989-Dec. 1993
Jack Hensley: Jan. 1994-Nov. 4, 2008
Ron Fisher: Nov. 4, 2008-Dec. 31, 2013
Note: Huber Heights was incorporated Jan. 23, 1981
*President of council