Jeri Finke

Jeri Finke Candidate for Seabrook Island Mayor

When Fred and I started thinking about where we wanted to live in retirement, it was an easy decision to return to a vacation spot that first wowed us in 1979. We purchased a lot during a golf visit in 2006, eventually built, and have been full-timers for nearly 13 years. We had enjoyed making the Washington, DC area home for more than 30 years, but have never had any regrets about leaving behind the city for Seabrook Island.

From day one here, we both have made every effort to demonstrate our belief in public service, in the power of community engagement, and paying it forward. For me, that has included cochairing SIPOA’s Newcomers Committee and volunteering on the Environmental Committee. I have served on Club advisory committees, including at present working on the Long Range Planning and Bylaws committees. I’m particularly proud of what was accomplished during the seven years I served on the Green Space Conservancy Board and chaired the Green Space Gala. 

I have served on Town Council for the last six years and as Mayor Pro Tem since December 2020, and in this term chair the Environment and Wildlife Committee. During these three terms, I took the lead on the Town’s successful opposition to seismic testing and offshore drilling; shepherded through the ordinance banning business use of single-use plastic bags and other plastics; and was the sponsor for developing the Community Development Grants that now help fund local organizations like the Seabrook Birders, Turtle Patrol, and the dolphin education program. My work led to enactment (2020) of provisions that for first time established Town regulations for short-term rentals.

I’m excited with the opportunity to continue my work on Council as Mayor. Among many issues, my to-do list includes:

  • Putting a new beach ordinance in place that better preserves this most valuable island asset, protects its wildlife, and helps ensure all enjoying and sharing the beach are comfortable and safe.
  • Pursuing a use for our share of county Greenbelt conservation funds to keep those dollars at our end of Johns Island.
  • Promoting more conversations and cooperation with SIPOA to better ensure this growing community is safe and secure.
  • Overseeing the required updates for the Town’s Comprehensive Plan and the Comprehensive Beach Management Plan, and moving forward with developing a Marshfront Development Plan to help address sea-level rise and the threat of more severe flooding.
  • Finishing pending projects, including repaving Seabrook Island Road and the garage and addition for Town Hall.
  • Completing work on enhancing the Town’s fire prevention code, and continuing efforts to ensure short-term rentals are adequately regulated but still have a positive impact on the culture and economics of the community. 

    I think we are all so fortunate to have a stake in this island, and after the disruptions of the pandemic and the negativity generated in recent years by the social bloggers, I am running for Mayor because I want the community to embrace the positive so that we can work together for something and for our community and its future. 

Please ask me anything at Jeri For Mayor.

-Submitted by Jeri Finke