|John Earl "Johnny" Anders, Jr.|
Mayor of Stamford, Texas
|Preceded by||Oscar Armstrong|
|Succeeded by||James Decker|
|Born|| July 14, 1950|
Stamford, Jones County, Texas, USA
|Spouse(s)|| Not first wife:|
Cindy Albus Anders (married 1998)
|Children|| John William Anders|
John Earl Anders, Jr., known as Johnny Anders (born July 14, 1950), is an automobile body shop owner who engages in the unusual hobby of metal art work in Stamford in Jones County north of Abilene, Texas. Anders was a member of the Stamford City Council from 1997 until his election as mayor in the spring of 2005. He was defeated in the 2018 election by James Decker.
Anders' paternal grandfather came to Stamford in a covered wagon in 1928 and went into the automobile business in 1932. Anders took over the family business on the death of his father, John Anders, Sr. (1932–1994). Anders is a native and lifelong Stamford resident who lives no more than a hundred yards from his birthplace. His mother is the former Bonnie Franklin (born c. 1934) of Odessa in Ector County in West Texas. Anders dropped out of Stamford High School without graduating with his Class of 1968 but later procured a General Educational Development diploma and has taken some college courses in law enforcement.
In 1998, Anders married the former Cindy Albus (born 1957). From a previous marriage, he has a son, John William Anders (born 1970) of Breckenridge, and two stepdaughters, Tammy Lindley of Abilene and Kathryn McKeever. Anders and family are members of St. Johns United Methodist Church in Stamford.
Anders was elected mayor of Stamford in 2005, when the incumbent, Oscar Armstrong, did not seek another term. On May 12, 2007, Anders was reelected to a second two-year term, having defeated opponent Gwen Baker, 336 to 127. Municipal elections in Texas are nonpartisan, and Anders considers himself an Independent. However, in 2006, he endorsed the Republican Jim Landtroop, then of of Plainview in Hale County, who fell short in a highly publicized bid to succeed the retiring Democrat Pete Laney, a former Speaker of the Texas House of Representatives. Landtroop rebounded to win the seat handily in the November 2, 2010, general election but lost in a reconfigured district in 2012.
As mayor, Anders in 2006 embraced the "Reclaiming Stamford" project, which seeks to rid the community of dilapidated homes, vacant businesses, and overgrown lots. Anders cleaned up his own property, Anders Paint and Body Shop, and then participated in the removal of litter and debris throughout the city. Reclaiming Stamford was first proposed by former city councilman Gary Decker and his wife, Connie. The program fosters citizen participation in cleaning up the city. It has been adopted in Breckenridge in Stephens County, Seymour in Baylor County, and Anson, the seat of Jones County.
Anders successfully pushed for the appointment of the Stamford police chief, instead of the past practice of election. The appointed chief issued in a year more than $60,000 worth of fines, instead of the fewer than $1,500 by the past elected chief. Anders said that Stamford had too much drug abuse and other infractions, and the appointed chief has been essential to bringing the crime rate under control.
Anders received statewide recognition in 2007 when he was the focus of a segment of Bob Phillips' syndicated television series, Texas Country Reporter. Anders makes model dinosaurs and other unusual items from scrap metal and leftover car parts available at his body shop. His dinosaur exhibit was based on the idea that some large automobiles in the 1960s and 1970s were called "dinosaurs" because of their size and use of large amounts of fuel. One of his dinosaur exhibits is in Harmon Park in Stamford; the other, 22 feet tall, which took two years to construct, is located at Anders' body shop. The Anders segment ranks No. 7 on "The Best" listing of all-time Texas Country Reporter episodes.
- ↑ 1.0 1.1 1.2 Statement of John E. Anders, Jr., Stamford, Texas, September 11, 2008.
- ↑ Endorsements of Republican Jim Landtroop for Texas State Representative. campaignsitebuilder.com. Retrieved on July 22, 2011; no longer on-line.
- ↑ 3.0 3.1 Celinda Emison (October 15, 2006). Cleanup projects gaining popularity: Cities in the Big Country organizing efforts to spruce up homes, businesses. Abilene Reporter News. Retrieved on May 10, 2019.
- ↑ Bob Phillips. Weekend of August 30, 2008: Show #1096 - Best of TCR #7. Texas Country Reporter 2008 Episode Guide. Retrieved on May 10, 2019.