Dave Graf joins District 4 race for Ogden City Council
OGDEN — A longtime member of the Ogden Planning Commission is looking to take the next step in serving the city.
On Wednesday, Dave Graf officially announced to the Standard-Examiner that he is running for the District 4 City Council seat being vacated by Ben Nadolski, who is a mayoral candidate this year.
Graf, who has spent the last seven years on the city’s Planning Commission, including two as chairperson, said nearly a decade in Ogden has taught him a lot.
“I’ve learned a great deal about Ogden and how it operates, what kind of plans are in place and coming to be in place” he said. “Even though I’ve only lived here since 2014, I’ve involved myself in a great deal of stuff. … I really feel that between my experience in Ogden, my experience as a planning commissioner and my 32 years of experience in a small business — owning and building — really brings a lot to bear on what I can deliver.”
He had been a part of several organizations, including Weber Pathways — now the Trails Foundation of Northern Utah — and the GOAL Foundation, and has also served as an adjunct professor at Weber State University.
Graf said he felt it was time to start giving back to the people of Ogden.
“I have been patient in my retirement since 2014 in really letting Ogden come to me with opportunity rather than charge into something,” he said. “I’m not going to get that something by working for someone else. I’m really looking forward to giving something to the community that I live in, and I think that I’m prepared to do that at the next level, and that’s City Council.”
He said one of his main goals, if elected, would be to make Ogden stand out in a time of significant growth in Northern Utah.
“Utah is one of the fastest-growing states — if not, the fastest growing-state — in the United States,” he said. “As a result of that, Ogden finds itself in competition with every other community up and down the Wasatch Front, and some of the cities that are more rural as well, to attract quality people and quality businesses to support their community. Economic development is very important and we need to be open to the ideas that will attract business and talented people to Ogden.”
Graf said the conservation of the outdoors is also important to him.
“We are an outdoor mecca,” he said. “Things like our mountains and trails and pathways and rivers are all just great resources to care for and develop further for everybody’s use.”
He said that this is a crucial election for the city.
“This election cycle is very important for Ogden,” he said. “We’re going to elect a new mayor. We’re going to elect at least two new City Council persons. … Potentially Bart Blair, if he wins the mayor’s seat, his seat will open too, so potentially that’s a fourth City Council seat that will turn over and there will be changes at the administrative level of city government. This is the time when the community really needs to get engaged and understand who all the candidates are, what the changes are that may be coming and raise their voices about their concerns regarding Ogden, and then vote.”