Gauging the paucity of comments received about the glaring absence of longtime McLennan County Precinct 2 Commissioner Lester Gibson from commissioners court meetings, and over many months, many constituents appear unconcerned. One reason might well be his handy, efficient assistant, Pat Chisolm-Miller, who has 22 years of knowledge about the precinct and inner workings of county government. She obviously has been able to oversee at least some of Gibson’s obligations and duties, even though she does not sit on the court as an elected policymaker.
With the primary election underway, Democratic voters would be wise to make it official: With Gibson stepping down from the post at term’s end, Chisolm-Miller would ensure a smooth transition. Given that Gibson has won this post repeatedly over 24 years, it’s obvious many voters have preferred his governance. If so, Chisolm-Miller, 59, brings a stunning wealth of experience to the job. She vows to respect Gibson’s past priorities while setting her own course on new challenges facing county government and its constituents.
During a meeting with the Trib editorial board, Chisolm-Miller impressed us with her insights not only into the East Waco community and the cause of civil rights Gibson has long championed but also the work-a-day concerns and infrastructure priorities of constituents in communities such as Mart, Hallsburg, Riesel and Axtell. She promises, in her court tenure, to look at pressing issues such as broader preventive health care.
While her opponent Norman Manning remains an able force, we see value in his remaining on the Waco ISD board to help ensure academically struggling schools in his district surmount challenges facing them and their neighborhoods. Given her background, diplomacy and common sense, Pat Chisolm-Miller strikes us as the Democrats’ best bet for the county post.