“Mike, this is simple, bud. You are here to tell a better story.” And then he just left. He felt no further explanation was needed.

Those are the words my pastor said to me when I sought his advice one evening shortly after my first public speaking event after announcing my candidacy. Upon hearing his brief declaration, I remember standing there thinking, “What the heck is he talking about?”

But his words and phrasing never left me and by the time I got home, I walked in the house to tell my wife, “Honey, I am just here to tell a better story. Isn’t that awesome?”

And now the time is here. I am excited, anxious, honored and humbled to begin my term as Beaufort County Councilman for District 7 in a few short weeks. For months, I have been attending every single committee meeting, caucus and general council meeting that I could possibly fit into my schedule.

Even before the primary victory last June, I found it necessary to give everything I could muster back to the people of Beaufort County to show just how serious I was and am in becoming their next councilman. This has been a long and rigorous campaign, culminating on Nov. 8 in the general election.

Humbly, I say thank you for your support.

I also offer a sincere and humble thank you to the current councilwoman, Cynthia Bensch. I appreciate her giving so much of her time over the past four years representing this District and the people of Beaufort County.

I also offer thanks to all those who ran for public office and those already in public office, including William “Bill” McBride of St. Helena Island, retiring after 30 years on Council.

We are in times of great economic need in Beaufort County, in South Carolina and in the United States of America. It is time to move forward with mending old and existing relationships with other county councils, town councils, our school board, institutions of higher learning; businesses, citizens and tourists alike, as well as creating new relationships.

In my next article, I will lay out my first plans of action as I take office and let you know the steps I have already taken in resolving these long-standing issues in our county that will help improve our community.

Beaufort County, I truly feel that “The Best Is Yet To Come.” Join with me, put on your seat belt, and hold on.

Michael E. Covert is a Beaufort County councilman-elect, representing Bluffton. He can be reached at mikecovert@email.com.