Young mayor gives teen in­sight into run­ning a town

Maryland Independent - - Front Page - By TIF­FANY WAT­SON twat­son@somd­news.com Twit­ter: @Tif­fIndyNews

In­dian Head Mayor Bran­don Paulin re­cently had a chance to im­part his knowl­edge and ex­pe­ri­ence as the leader of the town and wel­comed a lo­cal teen to see first­hand what it means to be in charge of a mu­nic­i­pal­ity.

James Proc­tor III in­terned in Paulin’s shadow at In­dian Head Town Hall from July 11 through 22, and the Wal­dorf stu­dent de­scribed it as a re­mark­able ex­pe­ri­ence he will never for­get.

“It was amaz­ing meet­ing the youngest mayor in the coun­try,” Proc­tor said. “He taught me a lot and told me about what he’s try­ing to work on in the town like fix­ing the main wa­ter sup­ply, try­ing to get busi­nesses to come to the town, mak­ing In­dian Head larger and well-known, as well as get­ting more fund­ing from the state and county.”

Proc­tor is a ju­nior at North Point High School, where he cur­rently runs track. He also runs for the Comets of Charles County, a track team which prac­tices at Henry E. Lackey High School. He has prospec­tive col­leges in mind and plans to be­come a physi­cian.

His fa­ther, James Proc­tor Jr., a Wal­dorf res­i­dent who is in the mil­i­tary, said he was im­pressed by what Paulin has ac­com­plished in such a short time as mayor and he knew his son could learn a lot from him.

“As my wife and I were look­ing at in­tern­ship op­tions for my son, I reached out to Paulin’s dad who I used to work with and we just co­or­di­nated it from there,” Proc­tor Jr. said.

Dur­ing the in­tern­ship, Proc­tor III said he learned how to use a scan­ner, how to up­date and man­age projects and how to use Ex­cel. He helped make life eas­ier for the town staff by or­ga­niz­ing all of the town’s hard copy blue­prints, la­bel­ing them and scan­ning them into their com­put­ers and servers.

“In the longterm it’s go­ing to help our Pub­lic Works De­part­ment with the plans that were fall­ing apart and it will bring the town into the 21st cen­tury,” Paulin said.

“Now it’s re­ally easy,” Proc­tor said. “All they have to do is go onto the com­puter and find a folder for that par­tic­u­lar blue­print and it’s right there to help solve the prob­lem. I also filed forms for some of the secretaries, and Mayor Paulin and I went around and sup­ported the lo­cal busi­nesses. We went to a lo­cal restau­rant, ate with the own­ers and spoke with them about their needs.”

For a teen who has never had a real job be­fore, Proc­tor III said he rose to the chal­lenge ev­ery day for two weeks. He said it felt good to see what the real world is like as he pre­pares to go to col­lege and join the work­force.

“I don’t mean to brag, but my son is a bright kid,” Proc­tor Jr. said. “My son is the only male in the North Point High School STI [Science, Tech­nol­ogy and In­dus­try] Biotech­nol­ogy pro­gram. He’s very hard­work­ing and in­tel­li­gent. He was very en­thu­si­as­tic about work­ing with the mayor in par­tic­u­lar and the town staff. I think it was an eye-opener for him be­cause it en­abled him to gain some real life ex­pe­ri­ence.”

Proc­tor III ad­mits that he didn’t know much about the Town of In­dian Head prior to his in­tern­ship at town hall, but he has since learned so much about In­dian Head that he hopes for it to pros­per in the near fu­ture.

“I re­ally hope that the town does ex­pand and be­come very rich in busi­ness,” Proc­tor said. “I hope that the town would con­nect with the rest of Charles County, es­pe­cially Wal­dorf and La Plata, that are boom­ing with busi­ness. I hope to see more busi­nesses and res­i­dents use their re­sources and the naval base to come to­gether to make the town great.”

Paulin said that an in­tern­ship at In­dian Head Town Hall is great work ex­pe­ri­ence for young peo­ple and he is will­ing to write a let­ter of rec­om­men­da­tion for any­one who will vol­un­teer or in­tern with the elected of­fi­cials and staff.

“Proc­tor III did a fan­tas­tic job at town hall,” Paulin said. “He’s ex­tremely re­spect­ful, re­spon­si­ble and over­all a re­ally good per­son. To­wards the end of the in­tern­ship I took him to lunch be­cause I can tell this kid is re­ally go­ing places. I think it’s some­thing that we will con­tinue do­ing and any­one can talk to me or Town Man­ager Ryan Hicks to see about any vol­un­teer or in­tern­ship op­por­tu­ni­ties at town hall. We’re al­ways look­ing for free help.”

SUB­MIT­TED PHOTO

Mayor of In­dian Head Bran­don Paulin, stu­dent in­tern James Proc­tor III and Town Man­ager Ryan Hicks at In­dian Head Town Hall af­ter Proc­tor fin­ished his two-week in­tern­ship with the mayor and his staff.

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