John Ray is running for Borger City Council, Place 2.
Ray moved to Borger in March of 1981 from Chanute, Kan. to work for the City of Borger.
"The people here are kind, made you feel that you belonged here," he said. "[I] stayed here, raised my family and grandkids. This is home."
He worked for the Borger Police Department from March 1981 to October 1993. He started as a patrolman and eventually worked as a sergeant and department photographer.
He has been involved with the Hutchinson County EOC, back when C.B. radios and gut feelings were used to keep the city and county safe. He also helped build the new police department and E.O.C. with Danny Richards.
Ray worked for a few years at Salim Motor Company selling cars. Then in 1996, he began a new career as a safety inspector (enforcement of OSHA and company requirements.) He started with Zachry at the Phillips Refinery until 1999, traveling all around the country working in power plants and paper mills. However, he still kept his family in Borger.
In 2000, he went to work for Spradling Oil Company as its safety coordinator thru the generosity of Charlotte Spradling.
"I was really able to get back and more involved with the E.O.C. and get involved with what the City of Borger was doing, attending just about every city council meeting, and at times giving my input," Ray said.
In 2007, he had a heart attack and kidney failure that set him back physically for awhile, as he was on dialysis for a little over a year and a half.
On July 4, 2009, he received a kidney transplant that has proven successful. He says he has been blessed by God.
He belongs to First Baptist Church in Borger and is active in his Sunday School class.
"I would like to say if you don't have a church home, call me," Ray said. "I'll talk to you about a super church with a great boss, Jesus!"
He received a call back in June 2010 from a company in Dallas called Ashton Oilfield Services. They had heard of his safety record and wanted him to go to work for them. He told them he could only do it if he stayed in Borger to raise his grandkids, which worked out fine.
He goes down to Hobbs, N.M. for a few days a week and then returns home. He has a staff that he works for, and enjoys the work because people work together.
Ray and his wife Debbie have been married for 36 years as of this April, moving here from Chanute, Kan., where they both went to school since the fifth grade. The couple also dated in high school.
He entered the Kansas National Guard in 1973-1981, and was a sergeant when he moved to Borger.
They brought one daughter Melissa with them, and had another daughter Dana. They now have four grandchildren, three girls and one boy. They had to take custody of the two youngest, Kaden, 8; and Starr, 6. The other girls live in Baytown with their parents. Kaden and Starr attend school in Borger. The other grandparents are Carl and Charlotte Musgraves.
Ray also belongs to the Masonic Lodge in Borger. He was a Past Master at the Adobe Lodge and present member of the Unity Lodge.
He said he feels he is qualified to serve on the city council due to his past work experience with the City of Borger, seeing what has been done, and believing that Borger has a lot to offer people.
“I can and will get things done,” Ray said.
He said he knows what the needs of the fire department are, along with the police department and city crews that are out working on the roads, along with sewer, trash, and water workers.
“We need to be aware of their needs as well as you,” Ray said.
He wants the public to know he is not putting out any signs as to the expense and times of the economy.
“But it is your vote that counts, not the number of signs placed all over town,” he said.
He said he can bring professionalism to the office of city council member, and will listen to all opinions, not just ones based on one individual's concerns, and will do a quality job if elected.
The general election for Borger City Council is May 14.