It was nothing but smiles and applause as the Cotati City Council appointed its newest member to the city’s planning commission at its Tues., June 11 meeting.
Her name’s Brittany Mckanny and she’s new to town, relatively speaking. It’s only been a year and a half since Mckanny, her husband and their seven-month old infant moved to the city from Santa Rosa, but already she’s certain that Cotati is where she wants to put down roots, as it were.
Why? Well, the reason is quite simple: she likes the small town feel.
“We knew about Cotati but never really understood the uniqueness of the community. Since we’ve been here we’ve fallen in love. It’s a wonderful place that we are absolutely committed to raising our son in,” Mckanny said. “The walkability, the people, the fact that my neighbors say hello—we feel like we’re a part of this place. It’s incredible.”
It all started a couple weeks back when Mckanny attended a planning commission meeting with an eye towards getting more involved in her community. Right time right place, because it was
there that Mckanny met Councilmember Landman. Landman just so happened to be scouting for a replacement for the planning commission after its previous member, Ben Ford, resigned due to complications in his personal life.
Mckanny and Landman spoke, and Landman must have liked the cut of her jib because he put her name forward as Ford’s replacement. Her nomination sailed through the council with unanimous approval.
“There can be a lot of value in bringing in a new face, a new energy. A fresh viewpoint,” Landman said. “I think it’s good to bring in someone who’s got a family and helps give a different look on what we need for the community.”
For her day job, Mckanny works with her husband over at Pacific Gas and Electric (PG&E) as a program manager over in gas operations. It’s actually where they met and Mckanny feels that she couldn’t have asked for a more family oriented company. They’ve worked with her during the transition to Cotati and have helped get her situated.
When asked whether her son, Bo Murphy, would be following in his parent’s footsteps, she claimed he was seven months old and still considering his options.
“I’m trying not to pressure him into doing one thing or another. I’m going to let him see where his talents take him,” Mckanny said.
Mckanny knows that she’s new to Cotati. It’s a flaw that she hopes to turn into a strength by providing a fresh, outside perspective for a city and a commission that’s composed almost entirely of long term residents. Still, despite her eagerness to dive into the job, she’s well aware that experience has its place too. She says that her first priority upon taking office will be to listen and learn, to better know the community and figure out how they do things.
And Mckanny will have her chance. Her first planning commission meeting is scheduled for July 1st at the Cotati City Hall. Anyone interested in meeting the new commission member should swing by and say hello.