Emily Swett looks forward to providing a younger perspective to the Cody City Council.
“I want to be able to attract younger people to Cody and keep them here,” she said.
Swett is unopposed as a Ward 3 nonpartisan candidate. At age 28, she sees her candidacy as an opportunity to set an example for others of her generation.
She hopes her actions can help people in their 20s and early 30s realize there’s a place for their age group in city government, and in other community service capacities.
Friends and family were somewhat surprised about her decision to seek office, she said, but they’re excited and supportive.
“People who know me know I like involvement in community events,” she said.
She met one of her biggest supporters, Brian Beauvais, during the Park County Leadership Institute in 2018-19.
The University of Wyoming Extension’s institute is open to emerging and established leaders who wish to increase their skills, knowledge and participation in the community.
Swett is now a representative on the institute’s steering committee as it prepares for the next class.
Upon completing the institute, Swett began looking for opportunities for community involvement. This led to interactions with council members, and what she learned peaked her interest.
When Ward 3 incumbent Glenn Nielson said he didn’t intend to file for reelection, Swett jumped at the chance to represent her constituents in that capacity. In addition to governing with fellow councilors, she would like to serve as a council liaison to other local committees and boards.
The upstate New Yorker was familiar with northwest Wyoming before making Cody home three years ago. She’d visited the area since age 2 on vacation with her family, who spent every summer on the 7D Ranch ranch in Sunlight Basin.
Swett grew up in Rochester, a city of about 200,000. A 2009 high school alum, she was president of the high school student body and swim team captain.
“I was always in some type of leadership role in high school,” she said.
She studied economics and French at Amherst College in Massachusetts. With bachelor’s degree in hand, she worked as a Wall Street investment banker for three years. But when she decided to give up 80-90 hour work weeks, she returned to the 7D, this time as an employee, for two seasons.
Intending to make Cody home, Swett bought a house within eight weeks after arriving. Two years ago her parents did the same, and now spend summers in Cody.
Swett teaches at Firefly Yoga and does social media and website management for several local companies. She’s also pursuing a master’s degree in youth development leadership through Clemson University in South Carolina.
A former competitive swimmer in college, last fall Swett started coaching the CKATS, a youth swim team.
“I love student athletes and I love to coach,” she said. “It’s something I want to do more of.”
As a city councilor, Swett looks to support youth recreation.
“I’m clearly passionate about recreation and finding creative and sustainable ways for youth recreation,” she said. “The more we can do to support that, the better.”
The Ward 3 candidate says she has no personal agenda.
“I just want to be a good representative for the community,” she says.
On Jan. 1, new council members will inherit a budget reduced by 17%.
Swett said the budget process is never easy.
“With my financial background combined with my love for this community, I hope I can bring an unbiased and informed viewpoint to the council when going through that process,” she said.