My name is Laura Barlond-Maas, and I am very excited to be the Mayor of Olivet!
First, for those who may not know me very well, a bit of my background: I was born on a farm in Lee Township, the youngest of six children. My dad instilled in us the idea that hard work matters, and my mom taught me how to examine a need, and plan toward a solution, thereby improving our corner of the world. In every area of my life, this is what I try to do: improve systems to make them better for people and help people learn what it takes to be better, whatever that means to each of them. I’ve done these things as a mom, elementary school volunteer, Girl Scout Leader, Meals on Wheels volunteer, teacher, and friend. I’ve also taught adult Sunday school, and I present mini-lessons to target the kids present at church—but the adults are listening too!
After graduating from Olivet College, I got married and settled down here to raise five kids. I think Olivet is a great place to raise a family—excellent schools and a caring community. I have worked at Olivet College for nearly thirty years, first as a secretary and then as a teacher.
So, my life’s work is to make the world better for people and help people become better for the world. As many of you know, I did exactly this when I served the City and its residents on the council and as mayor from 1997-2005.
As mayor, I coordinated a comprehensive plan for the city, initiated the quarterly city newsletter and worked with city and state representatives to replace the old water tower. We also had a mayor exchange day to share ideas and discuss infrastructure with the village of Schoolcraft. I regularly talked to school groups about leadership skills and how city governments function, letting children and teens at every level know that they, too, can participate in our communities.
See you around town!