Hierophant Election

PUBLIC NEWS #3513
Date: 9/21/2014 at 1:10
From: Shaheen Vaz'rias the White
To : Everyone
Subj: Hierophant Election

While I appreciate Alesud's interest in serving the Pines and I am sure that she is very skilled in some things, I would like to lend some perspective to the remarks made in her contestation post. This is only fair to our citizens, as I've found that most people only notice events that are publicized and controversial.

I rarely talk about myself, and most of my work is done quietly. I have always considered my primary role to be that of serving the good of the Council, rather than trying to impress people, which may make me an easier target for spurious smears and accusations.

However, there is more to being a Hierophant than having a sharp blade. Alesud has recently wakened (again) from about a century which included long dormant periods and a significant absence from the Pines. Thus she has little direct knowledge of the Council's problems and progress over the past few decades -- or of the dedicated work done by loyal Ithaquans, including myself.

Many times I am the only Hierophant awake, and sometimes the only Ithaquan. So I have made a few mistakes, which is unavoidable in anyone who is active as much as I am. I sometimes must make decisions based on the information available to me, and the precedents that I am aware of. While I am happy to apologize for any errors that have been made, I think that it is important to point out that such mistakes were never made out of bias. My actions have been -- and will always be -- chosen with the best interests of the Pines at heart.

The only people who never make mistakes are the ones who sleep a lot or never do anything. Leadership is expressed in different ways, and it takes much more than combat ability to make a good leader. While I am not skilled in the fighting arts, I do excel in many other areas.

Citizens can feel comfortable in coming to me with their problems and concerns, because I am known to show patience and fairness. I look for solutions based on law, logic and reason, rather than being hasty to advocate brute force.

I have quietly helped to mediate some issues that have arisen over the years, and have provided balance where it was needed. Ithaqua has a strong, proven leadership team at this time, arguably the best group (for the strength and well-being of the Pines) that the Council has seen in many decades.

Many of you may not be aware of this, but before I became Hierophant several important commodities (including wood and diamonds) were not available in Ithaqua, and had not been for a very long time. Worse, the Council was continually losing funds due to a number of factors that no previous administration had been able to completely solve.

It is no exaggeration to say that Ithaqua was on the verge of bankruptcy, and had been for a long time (I'm sure our older citizens can remember frequent "fund raisers" that attempted to refill the Council's depleted coffers). No organization can be very strong, or able to handle new challenges (military or otherwise), when operating like that. There were also long periods of time when no Hierophant was consistently awake.

And there is more to the Ministry of Trade than running caravans. I worked very closely with the Wildgraf over a period of years to analyze the economic forces that were draining the Council coffers, and then to test and implement solutions until we achieved a positive balance to our cash flow -- while continuing to produce the commodities we need.

This was no small feat, and some said it couldn't be done. Thanks to the (mostly unnoticed by the public) years of hard work and dedication that Airamaya and I devoted to this, the Council is now in a secure financial position. Today Ithaqua enjoys a prosperity that others envy. The Council is well funded, reserves of critical materials have been rebuilt, and materials are now adequately supplied to maintain our defenses, as well as to produce the weapons and goods we all rely on.

Does this sound exciting? Probably not. Spear-waving always grabs attention, but many of the most important leadership decisions are made behind the scenes, and most citizens never hear about them. That is one of the roles of a true leader: to solve problems before they get too far advanced. It's seldom glamorous, and usually involves a lot of sustained hard work. And much work remains to be done, in this and other areas, for the well-being of the Council. My vision is for Ithaqua to continue moving forward and not fall back.

My point is, we all have different skills and talents, as well as different viewpoints. I have proven again and again that I am willing to put mine to work in service of the Council and its citizens, and have continued to show dedication and fortitude in serving the Pines over the years.

By preserving diversity and balance in our leadership, we help to protect a healthy diversity in our citizenship as well. And the diversity of her people helps to keep Ithaqua strong.

As always, I welcome any questions, comments or concerns.

Yours in continuing service,

Shaheen

Penned by my hand on the 12th of Halitus, in the year 57 AM.