Her wit, proactivity and her bold personality are what will be missing in the council’s chambers as Mayor Pro Tem Deandra Chenault bids her role adieu.
“A lot of people have asked what’s next, my answer is God has not told me that as yet,” Chenault said.
Chenault said for more than 60 years a business was never opened on the east side of Wichita Falls, so her first major goal as District 2 city councilor was to address that.
“Family Dollar actually reached out to me and when they did, I called the city and said hey Family Dollar wants to come to the east side, what do I have to do? We gotta make this happen,” Chenault said.
And she did, but that wasn’t all.
Though she is hopeful about what’s next for her, Chenault said stepping down is bitter-sweet.
“Seven years, five months and a few days is a long time to be on council so you get adapted to people,” Chenault said. “Being on the city council in Wichita Falls, Texas, I never thought ever in a million days that it would be.”
Wichita Falls Mayor Stephen Santellana who has been working side by side with Chenault for the last seven years said he is proud of her for all the years of service she has given to District 2.
“You’re never trying to fill her shoes, I always say you take her shoes, you set them aside and you fill your own shoes because she has been very vocal,” Santellana said. “I told Mr. Nelson, you want to take what she has done, she’s got the ship pointed in the right direction, you want to take that wheel and just keep going with that positivity she has for District 2.”
As she looks ahead to her next chapter, Santellana said he wishes her well.
“She is just a special soul, special person, she has so many good traits about her, I think sometimes she doesn’t even realize how important of a person she has been to Wichita Falls for so many years,” Santellana said. “Just take that and continue on with that success.”
“I hope that some young child [or] African American young lady sees me and it motives them to maybe want to get in politics or just lets them know that anything you wanna do, you can do it,” Chenault said.
Chenault’s last city council meeting was last Tuesday.
The community is invited to her farewell party Saturday evening at the travel center on Scott from 5:00 to 7:00 p.m.
Newcomer larry nelson was elected to the District 2 seat in last week’s election.