Fran Cook retires: ‘Keep the respect and humor in balance’
Ryan Summerlin April 4, 2012
Fran Cook was mayor of Fraser from 2005 to 2012 but decided not to run for re-election this year.
“I took office in June of 2005 as a Board appointee to fill the vacancy from Pat Howlett. I was elected in April 2006 to complete the term and again in April 2008 for a 4-year term,” she said.
Originally from Baltimore, Cook moved to Fraser in June 1973 and was a teacher at the Fraser Valley Elementary School from 1973 to 2003. After retirement she became the office manager for Church of the Eternal Hills.
She was also a rancher with her former husband for 23 years on the Hudler Ranch off Highway 34. She has two sons and a grandson.
“I have my Fraser home listed for sale in order to move to where all three of my boys are in the Denver area,” she said.
“All three of my boys are in the same place. It’s an omen. I wouldn’t leave if it wasn’t for my family. Fraser is my home. I made deep connections here even though I grew up in Baltimore.”
Cook is most proud of the staff efficiency and effectiveness, and the town Trustees’ dedication.
“They are team players and collaborate well with agencies in town, and in the county.”
She also credits the board for making balanced decisions based on citizen input and overall town goals. When asked if she was disappointed when Winter Park and Fraser didn’t merge, “it wasn’t the right time. But its time will come,” she said.
She is proud that despite not continuing with the merger, the towns continue to collaborate.
Cook has two dreams for Fraser: economic recovery with heritage tourism and public transportation.
What does she plan to do with all her free time?
“I am going to be a lunch lady. Lunch and Bridge. Lunch and Book Club.”
This will be her first true retirement since leaving teaching in 2003, which will give her time to resume work on her family genealogy. She will stay in Fraser until her house is sold and will continue to work as the office manager at the Church of Eternal Hills in Tabernash.
“This is a new test and new learning experience. And hopefully new growth,” she said.
Despite who wins the election on Tuesday, Cook knows the new mayor and new board will create a “win-win for Fraser.”
“We have strong candidates no matter how it turns out.”
Her advice to the new board:
“With love, mutual respect and humor they can accomplish anything. Keep the respect and humor in balance with goals and challenges.”