Conrad ‘CJ’ McCormick seeks new term on Bethel City Council
KYUK is posting a series of profiles on Bethel City Council candidates ahead of the October 5 election. There are six candidates vying for four open seats, and each seat is for a two-year term. KYUK city reporter Olivia Ebertz spoke to incumbent Conrad “CJ” McCormick about his priorities for the city.
At 24, McCormick is the youngest candidate on the ballot this year, and the only candidate who grew up in Bethel; he has lived here all his life. McCormick served on city council for a year and has proven to be a measured speaker who often refers to the pros and cons on either side of an issue before making a decision.
During his tenure, McCormick has been a strong advocate for the city’s pandemic mitigation measures, including mask mandates and employee vaccine mandates. He works at the Yukon-Kuskokwim Health Corporation in public relations and has acknowledged his employer’s influence in his COVID-19 strategies for the city. McCormick has said at city council meetings that he prefers the city to take action aligned with YKHC’s directions.
McCormick also said that if elected he would like to address the city’s relations with local tribes during the ongoing fight against COVID-19.
“I wish Bethel had better relations with certain tribes. Not just ONC in town, but further afield, you know. I think there is a lot of work we can do related to COVID-19 with other local tribes that would really help us fight COVID better, ”said McCormick.
Another big issue for McCormick is sexual violence. He says the police department may be better able to deal with this violence.
“We currently have someone evaluating the police department’s handling of sexual violence cases right now. And I think it’s critical that we really capture the information we get from this investigation, because it’s always been a widespread problem here, ”said McCormick.
McCormick said the police department can help combat sexual violence by appointing officers who specifically deal with this type of assault. And he said the city should provide more resources for the survivors. McCormick also said there should be more dialogue between different city bodies, as an example he pointed to a forum that was held last year with the Tundra Women’s Coalition, the city council de Bethel and the Bethel Police Chief on how sexual assault cases are handled. at Bethel.
McCormick said voters should choose him because of his pragmatism and perfect board attendance record. He said he hopes to be re-elected so that he can continue to serve his community.
The municipal election will take place on Tuesday, October 5, and early voting has already started. You can click here to listen to a full interview with McCormick and here to hear the full Bethel City Council Candidates Forum.