Bill Baker, who said he lives in Enterprise “by the grace of God,” announced his candidacy Saturday for the mayor’s post in the City of Progress.
Baker made the announcement prior to the new car giveaway at Sam Boswell Honda before several hundred people who packed the inside of the building in hopes their ticket would be drawn. Baker hopes they will cast their vote for him in the Aug. 25 election.
“I want your support,” said Baker, vice president of Government Services at Navigator International for the last three years. A 24-year member of the U.S. Army, Baker retired a Sgt. Major. “If you don’t live in the city limits, talk to your friends that do and tell them to vote for Bill Baker.”
Baker used the acronym MVP for his plan as mayor.
“One thing we need is focused readership,” he said. “You’ve heard of MVP, usually for Most Valuable Player. In the Army it’s Mission, Vision and Planning.”
Regarding his plan, Baker asked where the city would be five and 10 years down the road.
“The Veterans Home proposal was critical,” Baker said. “We know the business will be here and everybody is excited about the employees it will have. That’s huge. But, I know of about three vendors that will probably be coming to Enterprise just to support the home. That’s progress.”
Baker said his background as a defense contractor will also help bring global business to Enterprise.
“I had been pushed and pushed and pushed to run (for mayor),” Baker said. “When the Veterans Home was announced, I made the decision (to run) because I want to be part of the growth. There will be 300 jobs there just by itself, but then you have all of the consumables. All told with the vendors involved, you’re probably looking at 600 jobs.
“I will be focused on leadership. I want to sit down and build a 5-, 10-year road map and get everybody bought in on it.”
Baker began his tenure in the Army in 1978 after graduating high school from New Smyrna Beach, Florida. He later graduated from Troy University. He had three tours at Fort Rucker before retiring in 2002.
He has served as the chairman of the Enterprise Chamber of Commerce Military Affairs committee for the last 12 years; he served as the Disabled American Veterans certified Veteran’s service officer for the last 18 years; Department of Alabama Commander; and Chief of Staff to the National Commander. He is a life member of Enterprise Post 6683, Veterans of Foreign Wars and the Army Aviation Association of America (Order of Saint Michael awardee).
Baker is married to the former Nell Welch of Hartford.