At Home with Scott and Aunna Fadness

First Family 4Scott and Aunna Fadness are relaxed and easy going as we sit down to talk. Given the last twelve months of their life, their demeanor is a pleasant surprise.

It was one year ago this month of September that Scott and Aunna began Scott’s run for Mayor in the town (almost City) where he has worked since 2006. “The last twelve months have been a bit action-packed,” confesses Scott. Aunna agrees, “the choice to run for mayor was Scott’s and we have just rolled with it.” Scott, 32, and Aunna, 31, moved to Fishers in 2007. Scott began an internship with the Town of Fishers in 2006 while commuting from Bloomington. Scott and Aunna would inevitably be drawn to call Fishers their home.

The build up to the primary last spring was a crazy time, and exciting in another way, for during the busiest part of the race, Aunna discovered she was expecting. They withheld this bit of news from the public until after the primary. And to top it off, their due date is mid-November, just after the main election.

Scott Fadness is a bit of a reluctant politician. Since 2006, Scott has held several different job titles within the town, learning as much as he can about each department along the way. Growing up on a farm in North Dakota in a town with a population of 2,200, Scott’s parents, Deb and Bruce Fadness, were surprised that he adapted so well to bigger city living. They were not surprised, however, by Scott’s soon to be new title of Mayor. Working out in the fields with his dad and grandfather, Scott learned every aspect of their farm through hands-on experience. They know this is where Scott gleaned his work ethic.

Frequently on ride-alongs with Fishers police officers, or helping plow the streets in the middle of the night, Scott continues to spend time with all departments. “I love the job of Town Manager. This is where my passion is. When the people voted to approve Fishers becoming a city in 2011, I had not realized that it meant I would lose my job,” shares Scott, “I ultimately decided to run for office so that I wouldn’t leave the team that I have loved being a part of.”

First Family 5Scott earned his undergrad degree in Political Science at the University of North Dakota. “I thought I would be a third generation farmer,” says Scott. Apparently he was guided down a different path. Knowing he wanted to get a masters degree in Public Affairs, IU’s SPEA was at the top of the list next to Harvard.

When Scott’s parents flew down to see him in Bloomington, Scott drove them around to let them get a feel for the city. “When you drive in downtown Bloomington and surrounding areas, you get an immediate feel for what Bloomington is all about. That is the feel I want to create in Fishers,” says Scott of his vision for our newly found city.

The move to Indiana would prove prophetic for not only his career path, but most importantly this is where he met Aunna. Aunna is from a small unincorporated area in northwestern Indiana called Union Mills, population: 2,212. She graduated from South Central High School, located in southern La Porte county. After getting her undergrad degree at Purdue, she earned a masters in Environmental Affairs at SPEA. She works for an environmental engineering company.

Both Scott and Aunna share a passion for giving back. Scott is on the Board for the Hamilton County Humane Society. They volunteer with the American Red Cross and for Alternatives, the women’s shelter in Anderson. They are also on the committee to fund a shelter in Hamilton County. Both are young, dynamic and easy-going, which are all needed characteristics for the job at hand.

Fishers has witnessed more than its fair share of growth and change in the last twenty-five years. Interestingly enough, a farm boy from North Dakota is leading us through the bulk of this shift. Given Scott and Aunna’s background and adaptability for change, their small town, country upbringing has perfectly prepared this couple for what lies ahead.

Scott is in the right place at the right time. But what if the baby decides the right time to arrive is on Election Day? “That is easy. I am with my wife and son. They are forever, the office isn’t,” says Scott.

He has his priorities straight.

This article originally appeared in Geist Community Newsletter, September 2014

Scott and Aunna Fadness, Soon to be the First Mayor of Fishers, and First Time Parents

First Family PhotoIt is refreshing to interview a politician and sense that “I could be friends with these people”, as is the case with Scott and Aunna. They are warm, inviting, fun, and shockingly normal. Let’s hope the office of Mayor does not jade them!

A funny story that was shared that didn’t make the article: Like any couple expecting their first child, there is a lot of preparation. One Saturday, Aunna was away for the day and Scott decided he would be useful and paint the baby’s room. (Let me stop here and add that Scott knows everything about how to run a farm, having grown up on one. Once he enters a home, however, the expertise abruptly ends at the threshold.) They had the paint, it just needed to be applied to the walls. Scott had watched the professional painters change the wall color in several other rooms in their home, so how hard could it be, right? Scott went to the Do-It Center to pick up the needed accoutrements and went to work. When Aunna got home he told her to go look in the baby’s room. She ascended the stairs with trepidation  Reaching the doorway of their baby’s room, she stood there and cried. For there was not only paint on the walls, but also on the carpet, ceiling, and trim. Before she came back downstairs, Aunna placed a desperate 911 call their painter to COME AND FIX IT!

First Family 5

Every couple has a story like this one, where boundaries are set, rules are created, and limitations discovered. One of my favorite stories of my husband’s household handiness is a plumbing episode from our condo in Broad Ripple. We had a drip in the master shower that was slowly getting worse and making me crazy. It had progressed to the point that I had to close the bathroom door at night. After insisting that he could fix it, and after dropping hints that I should just call a plumber, he finally took the initiative to tackle it, on Thanksgiving Day…

I was very pregnant with child #2, and our oldest was 3.5 years old. The shower was a standup, stall shower that I could barely fit into being 8 months pregnant. As he popped off the nob, it unexpectedly burst forth, pinning him against the opposing wall, shooting out cold water at his chest like a fire hydrant. His arms and legs are spastically moving all around as he is screaming. I enter the bathroom to see what is going on and started laughing to the point of tears. It was the funniest visual and situational comedic event I have ever seen that wasn’t on a movie screen. Our daughter enters and starts crying because she thinks I am crying, due to the tears of laughter streaming down my face.

By 2pm on Thanksgiving Day, every plumber in central Indiana is relaxing on a La-Z-Boy in a tryptophan-induced coma drinking beer. Being forced to shut off the water main for our entire building until the next day did not win us any points with our neighbors. Lesson learned: call a professional!

View the Geist article here:

Kara Kavensky

Kara Kavensky