Roeland Park City Council Ward 4 incumbent Michael Poppa confirmed this week that he will not seek a new term in this fall’s election as another resident of the area became the first person to file to run for the seat.
Michael Rebne, a public school teacher with two children who attend Roesland Elementary, said that he was compelled to run for the seat to continue momentum on a handful of issues that have been council focuses in recent years.
“I will work to ensure we continue to invest in our parks and green space, safety and access for walking and biking, commercial activity that benefits our community, and maintaining our built infrastructure,” Rebne said.
Rebne and his wife Kristi, who is also a teacher, bought their home in Roeland Park nine years ago and said the city has been the ideal place to raise their two children.
“We enjoy our friendly and helpful neighbors, the uniqueness of the homes in our neighborhood, our collective concern for the environment, including our parks, and our shared commitment to making our small city the best place to live,” Rebne said.
Though Poppa said he has not yet made a formal endorsement for the seat, he believed the residents of Ward 4 “would be in very good hands” with Rebne as a representative on the governing body.
Poppa first got substantially involved in Roeland Park city government issues in the lead up to the city’s vote on a non-discrimination ordinance back in 2014. He emerged from a very tight election to take the Ward 4 seat in 2015, defeating JoAnna Rush by four votes. Poppa said he made the decision against seeking another term so that he could spend more time with his family and with work. He is currently the Membership Engagement manager for the NEJC Chamber.