John Wilson’s interest and involvement in downtown Troy has grown over the years.
His initial involvement began at the urging of fellow Kiwanis Club member and downtown building owner Patty Rose, who encouraged him to get involved with the Troy Main Street organization and its board.
Then, some 2.5 years ago, he bought the Hatfield House building on East Main Street across from the police department and began extensive work on bringing it back to use. Today, the building has commercial space on the first floor, three apartments on the second floor and plans in the works for the third floor.
This spring Wilson’s interest in the downtown landscape turned into a job with his hiring as the executive director of the nonprofit Troy Main Street downtown advocacy organization.
The opening, with the departure of former director Katherine Hayes, came at an opportune time for Wilson, who said his job was lost to corporate downsizing at F&P America.
He said he’s spent the time since the hiring doing some meet and greet with downtown business owners, learning the job and undergoing training through the Main Street program.
“I think the downtown is in pretty good shape. I think that we are fortunate in a lot of ways. I think we have an awful lot of opportunity to continue to grow,” Wilson said from his office overlooking the Public Square.
“There are a few things I would like to do. We have a merchants’ organization that is very active. We have some property owners who are very active, take tremendous amount of pride in the upkeep of buildings and others who are not so active,” he said. “I would like to have communications with all of them to help determine the direction of our downtown buildings.”
Wilson said all of Main Street’s events such as the farmers market and the Taste of Troy will continue although he expects the Main Street board “to review everything going forward.”
A native of Bucyrus in North Central Ohio, Wilson became familiar with Troy working summers while in college at Ernst Concrete and a local construction business. He graduated from Tiffin University where he met wife, Kristie, with a degree in business management and accounting.
The Wilsons relocated to Troy in 1988 and live in Concord Twp. near Troy. They have two grown children.
For more information on Troy Main Street, visit the organization website at www.troymainstreet.org.