Diane Joens Served Cottonwood and the Verde Valley
Diane Joens worked as mayor of Cottonwood, Ariz., for nine years where she provided leadership, experience, and public service skills that enhanced her strengths in serving people. Her goal was always to positively impact people’s lives. She focused her energies full-time to provide services to the people in greater Verde Valley. When she ran for the office of mayor, she pledged to the people that they would be her entire focus, and she would not hold any other job. She kept her word to the people. She was always available to travel to Phoenix when the Governor or a legislator called for support. She was always available, and never said no (other than if there were two activities at the same time), to requests that people made for her to participate in community events, even if the invitations were personal and not necessarily work related. She was always there for community.
Creating better communication enabled Diane to address people’s needs so they could be heard and understood. The health, safety, and welfare of the people were her top priorities. Water conservation and the Verde River were high on the list of things Diane constantly worked on.
Diane worked diligently to establish solid communications that connected the communities in the district. The unique nature of each community, both incorporated and unincorporated, was understood and respected . Diane always said, “As neighbors we attend the same churches and schools, drive on the same streets, shop in the same stores, go to the same doctors, play in the same parks, and attend the same funerals and weddings. We drink out of the same aquifer and enjoy the same river. Good neighbor relationships in Cottonwood and the Verde Valley are important.”
Old-fashioned country strong values prepared Diane for the hours it took to get the job of mayor done. Diane and her husband Paul ran a farming operation near Manilla, Iowa for the first 15 years they were married. For Diane, this meant integrity, honesty, experience, and energy were qualities that she found important. She especially appreciated support and collaboaration from the Cottonwood city council and a very qualified city manager, Doug Bartosh, and his staff.
Diane Joens, Mayor of Cottonwood, Arizona, 2007 to 2016
Cottonwood City Councilor 2003 to 2007
Diane also worked for the Yavapai County Board of Supervisors for four years. Prior to that she determined eligibility for HUD and Rural Development Housing at the Verde Valley Manor. She worked in several banks and for the Arizona Department of Economic Security determining eligibility for Food Stamps, Aid to Families with Dependent Children, and the Arizona Health Care Cost Containment System (AHCCCS). She worked as a news reporter and family editor for the Denison Bulletin and Review.