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Carbondale Board of Trustees candidate bios

Carbondale’s municipal election is set for April 1 with a total of seven candidates seeking spots on the town board.

Ed Cortez is running for re-election, with six other candidates vying for four open seats on the town board. The other candidates are: John Hoffmann, Frosty Merriott, Barry Maggert, Pam Zentmyer, Brent Moss and Dan Van Devander. Sean Keery dropped out of the race on Tuesday.

Following are brief bios of the candidates.



Editor’s note: These bios first appeared in the Valley Journal on March 20.

Ed Cortez, 55, has lived in Carbondale for the past 12 years and is seeking his second term as a city council member. He currently holds the post of mayor pro-tem, and is a past member of the town’s planning and zoning commission, a position he held for six years.



Born in San Benito, Texas, he earned a BA in journalism from the University of Texas in 1975. He is a 2000 graduate of the Roaring Fork Leadership program, a past president of the Asistencia Para Latinos board of directors, and a member of KDNK, Carbondale’s community access radio station. He is married to Shonda Cortez, and is the owner of his own business, Ed Cortez Builder Inc.

John Hoffmann, 57, has lived in the Roaring Fork Valley since 1968, when he enrolled at the Colorado Mountain College campus in Spring Valley.

A blacksmith by trade, and founder of the Roaring Forge LLC in Carbondale, he has gone through several stints teaching his trade, at area schools, regional conferences and the World Congress of Artist Blacksmithing in Aachen, Germany. He also has worked as an architect, builder and engineer for several projects in Colorado, including work as a designer of furniture and lamps.

A longtime resident of Carbondale, his public service has included membership on area committees and boards, including the Carbondale Trails Committee and Friends of the Penny Hot Springs. As part of his work for the trails committee he has worked to preserve the Satank Bridge by forging an alliance among the town, Garfield County and the Colorado Historic Fund.

He is married to Kim Stacey. They have two children, Teal, 22, and Ben, 20. Since 1992 he has been assistant scout master for Boy Scout Troops 235 and 325.

Barry Maggert, 46, married his high school sweetheart, Renee, 25 years ago. They have three grown boys, twins Lee and Bryant, 23, and Taylor, 21. The family moved to the Roaring Fork Valley and Carbondale 22 years ago.

A graduate of the University of Texas with a Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering, Maggert is a registered structural engineer, and in 1988 incorporated his own structural engineering firm in Carbondale. His design work consists of private residences, commercial properties, and bridges, primarily on the Western Slope.

Spelunking (exploring caves), snowboarding, hiking, rafting and golf (he’d love to have the talent of his little brother, PGA tour professional golfer Jeff Maggert) are the family’s favorite pastimes.

As a member of the National Federation of Independent Businessmen and Chairman of the Libertarian Party in Garfield County, Barry says he “seeks out organizations that promote individual rights.” He has coached Little League baseball for many years and is the former coach of the Roaring Fork High School golf team.

Frosty Merriott, 60, his wife, Carly, and daughter, Shiloh, have lived for 10 years in Carbondale, where they are members of Church at Carbondale. Frosty and Carly will celebrate their 25-year anniversary later this year.

Frosty is a certified public accountant and maintains a tax and accounting firm in Basalt, which he will be relocating to Carbondale in late spring or early summer.

Frosty served on the Economic Roadmap Group and is a director with WIN Health Institute and the Crossland Foundation. He has previously served on the Carbondale Planning and Zoning Commission, the Carbondale Environmental Board and the Revenue Diversification Committee.

Brent Moss, 38, is from Minnesota, and moved to Fort Collins in 1989 to attend Colorado State University for four years, and then a year at the University of Salzburg in Austria. He graduated from CSU with bachelor’s degree in social science with an emphasis on business and economics.

He moved to Carbondale in the fall of 1996 to attend Colorado Mountain College’s Professional Photography program and is now a self-employed photographer. He has worked and volunteered with Challenge Aspen, the Aspen Youth Experience, KDNK, and the Carbondale Chamber.

Don Van Devander, 38, has lived in the Roaring Fork Valley for nearly 25 years. He grew up in Glenwood Springs and graduated GSHS in 1988, then graduated with a B.S in finance from Arizona State University 1992. He worked for the Phoenix Suns/Phoenix Arena Sports for seven years before returning to Colorado, and has lived in Carbondale for four years. He is a small business owner specializing in apparel for the hospitality industry, married with a 3-year old son.

“I am running for a town trustee position because many of the current trustees are not fiscally responsible nor do they have any intent of ever becoming so,” Don said. “It is time to have individuals with business experience on the board. I want to see a strong and vibrant tax base established through sales tax, not through the increase of fees and taxes. I also believe the town should be more supportive of its local businesses and encourage growth of them.”

Don says he enjoys fishing, golf, rafting, biking and skiing, loves the outdoors and wants to make sure “we preserve those activities and many others for our kids and grandchildren.”

Pam Zentmyer, 32, grew up in Carbondale and moved to Denver and Boulder for several years after high school to go to college. She moved back to Carbondale six years ago and, with her boyfriend Robbie Williams, started a business that is based in Carbondale.

Pam is excited for the opportunity to give back to a community that has had such a fundamental influence on who she is and what she believes in.

“Carbondale is certainly not the same community that it was when she was growing up, but there are many aspects that remain and that need to be carried into the future,” she says. “We have grown in size and our demographics have shifted across many lines.”

For the last three years, she has worked as an accountant for several small businesses throughout the valley. She feels like the diverse knowledge she has gained in her profession will be a direct benefit to the board in the area of budgeting and financial planning. Simultaneously, she has been working for CMC teaching in their adult English as a Second Language program. She believes Carbondale, as a town as well as a community, has a long way to go on becoming “culturally diverse,” as town’s Mission Statement clearly states as an objective.


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