Clay Kissner, a third-generation Fort Oglethorpe businessman and the owner of Clay Kissner Paving & Seal-Coating, has tossed his hat into the ring for a seat on the Fort Oglethorpe City Council.
Kissner, a lifelong resident of the city and a former City Council member, said he brings with him years of business expertise and a love of serving the community that he intends to put to work for the people of Fort Oglethorpe.
“I love our city,” Kissner said. “I grew up here, my daughter goes to school here, my family started our business here. I want to ensure that Fort Oglethorpe remains a safe and family-oriented community for our future generations.”
As the owner of Clay Kissner Paving & Seal-Coating, a local asphalt company certified AAA+ with the Better Business Bureau, Kissner said he understands how business expertise can translate into effective governance. And as a former council member from 2013, Kissner’s combination of business and government experience offers a unique and valued perspective, he said.
“I’m familiar with the challenges of local politics and I understand the significance of the decisions being made for the Fort Oglethorpe community,” he said. “These decisions are not to be taken lightly and I’m not afraid to take a bold stance. I know the value of a dollar and believe we can do better for our city.”
In order to maintain his political independence, Kissner said he will self-fund his campaign and will not be accepting contributions for his election to represent the people.
“I will not take any campaign contributions for my election,” he said. “Our local politics is flooded with money from developers and special interests. I will self-fund my campaign and keep myself beholden only to the people of Fort Oglethorpe.”
From 2001 to 2014, Kissner served the country by protecting U.S. waterways along the Tennessee River in the Coast Guard Auxiliary, he said. In his role, he was responsible for search-and-rescue missions. Stationed in Chattanooga as a member of Flotilla 1606, Kissner rose to the rank of commander before retiring in 2014.
Born and raised in Fort Oglethorpe all of his life, Kissner married his wife Lynn Kissner in 2005.
Together they have a 13-year-old daughter, Calynn, who has attended Fort Oglethorpe schools all her life. As a family, they enjoy weekends by the lake, boating, camping, and fishing. The Kissners live in the Hidden Pines subdivision.
“My family taught me to be a servant first,” he said, “and that’s the kind of life I’ve tried to lead. I love my community, I love solving problems, and I want to keep Fort Oglethorpe clean and safe for all people. I will not be outworked in this election and I plan on doing what it takes to serve the people of our great city.”