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Passionate About Athens


Councilwoman Chris Fahl is running for reelection as fourth ward representative

Anastasia Nicholas / Staff Writer

After traveling the world and dabbling in politics throughout the U.S., Councilwoman Chris Fahl, D-4th Ward, came to Athens, where she has been an involved member of the community ever since.


She was elected to serve on Athens City Council in 2008, and she is running unopposed to keep her seat in the Nov. 7 election.


Fahl’s entry into Athens politics included campaigning for former Athens Mayor Paul Wiehl in 2007, according to a previous Post report. She has been on council since 2008 and said she had a rocky start to her career in politics.


“When I went out the first time … there were people who were yelling at me,” the fourth ward Democrat said in a previous Post report. “You (would) talk to some people in town, and they think I’m the worst thing that ever came. It was kind of ugly.”


She has advocated for recreational and cultural amenities, safe neighborhoods and a fair and effective city government. She believed those items are part of what attracts jobs to the city, according to a previous Post report.

“I think it is great so many people are running for office … township trustees to school board … that is great for our area and democracy.”– Chris Fahl


During her time on council, Fahl has worked on traffic calming, or the installation of safety solutions such as radar speed signs or speed bumps to reduce traffic, in residential neighborhoods. She has also worked toward pedestrian safety measures and has focused on city trash laws.


Her greatest accomplishment on city council, she said, has been working with residents to write “Chapter 47: Resource extraction and disposal monitoring and mitigation,” which protects Athens in terms of resource extraction and waste disposal by requiring reports and monitoring activities related to those processes.


Fahl ran to represent the fourth ward in 2009 and defeated Republican candidate Randy Morris. She won with about 53 percent of the vote.


In her role on council, she made $7,919.55 in calendar year 2017. She has served as the chair of council’s Planning & Development Committee. Before being elected to council, she was the chairwoman of the city’s Planning Commission.


In 2009, the OU College Democrats wrote to a letter to The Post supporting Fahl, reading that she is a “terrific addition to the Athens City Council's 4th Ward.”


“Chris has been a dedicated servant to the city,” the letter said. “We trust in her ability to continue to serve the people of Athens, including the students of Ohio University.”


Athens City Council President Chris Knisely, who was an at-large councilwoman at the time, said in 2014 that she appreciates Fahl’s laid-back mentality.


“She’s great,” Knisely said. “She brings a combination of being very factual and truthful with a sense of humor. And sometimes we need that.”


This year, Fahl said she is happy that so many candidates are running for office this election.


“I think it is great so many people are running for office … township trustees to school board … that is great for our area and democracy,” Fahl said in an email.

Development by: Taylor Johnston / Digital Production Editor

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