There's a new president of Akron City Council, but it's not a name many expected. Ward 8's Marilyn Keith was named council's new leader by a 7-6 vote.
"Sometime we have to do things that aren't always comfortable, so I realized that now is the time that I have to step up to the plate and do something that I hadn't intended to do," said Keith.
Council was divided between Bob Hoch and Linda Omobien for council president, but it was Keith who then stepped forward as a new candidate.
There have been past conflicts between council members and the administration. Keith says she'll make an effort to address issues immediately, but also notes that it doesn't mean that conflict disappears.
"I can't guarantee that it won't happen, but I can guarantee that I won't add to it, nor will I, in any way, support it."
Keith said healthy communication and working together are her top priorities as she moves into the new position.
There was a potential conflict that was brought up during the meeting. Keith's husband is council clerk Bob Keith. Council president supervises the clerk's position, which could become a problem, but a possible solution would be to hand over the responsibility to someone else.