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Cave Creek Town Council appoints John Ford to fill vacant seat


Tara Alatorre

CAVE CREEK – The Cave Creek Town Council appointed a new council member, John Ford, during the regular meeting on May 16. He will fill the seat vacated by, Mark Lipsky, who suddenly resigned when the council renewed the town manager’s contract in April.

Ford, who has been a Cave Creek resident since 1969, was nominated by current members of the Cave Creek Town Council, along with one other nominee, and won the appointment to the council seat in a three-to- two vote, with Mayor Vincent Francia and Vice Mayor Steve LaMar voting no.

Ford was sworn in at the town council meeting on May 16, and his duties serving as a town council member will begin immediately. He will serve as an appointed councilman until the upcoming general elections this November, when, according to the town code, Ford will need to run for office to keep his seat on the council.

“I was approached for the appointment to the Cave Creek Council by members of the present council based on my knowledge of the town and long support of keeping Cave Creek special by doing what’s right for the town,” Ford said in an email statement he sent to The Foothills Focus. “They know I am an independent thinker who will not side with one group over another, as I am there for all of our Citizens.”

However, Ford does not plan on running for a council seat in the general elections; instead, he intends on serving the town as an appointed councilman until November. He says, unless there are not enough qualified candidates running for town council, he has no plans on campaigning.

“I am honored beyond my wildest dreams to be a councilmember, who has now served my community in so many different ways over the past 46 years of my life,” he said in the email statement.

Ford, originally from Castle Shannon, Penn., moved to Cave Creek in 1969 for health reasons. He attended the original Cave Creek School, graduated from Paradise Valley High School, and received his degree from University of Arizona. Moving back to Cave Creek in 1979, he started his 35-year long career as a paramedic and firefighter at what is now Station 821, serving Cave Creek and Carefree before both towns were incorporated.

“It all comes full circle now to the now incorporated town of Cave Creek, and the ultimate honor of being a councilman to this community I so dearly love,” said Ford on his Facebook page after being sworn in.

Ford also served for three years on the Cave Creek planning and zoning board as a member and vice chairman, a Mesa United Way Executive Board Member, and served two terms as an Arizona EMS Council Member, which is appointed by the Governor.

Before being appointed as a council member in Cave Creek, Ford came out of retirement in 2015 to work with Mesa Fire and Medical Department as a contract administrator, which builds specialized care models make treatment available in their residences, keeping patients out of emergency rooms.