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Haskell Kibler

Councilman Haskell Kibler

Councilman Haskell Kibler is in his first term and has been serving Forest Acres since 2021.

In joining city council, Haskell Kibler had to run for his seat not once but twice in five short months. He first began his campaign efforts when a special election was called to fill the seat of long-time, respected council member Shell Suber, who announced he was stepping down after 47 years.

Haskell, who grew up in Forest Acres and graduated from Cardinal Newman High School, says it was people like Suber who fueled his interest in participating in local government, even if it meant running two campaigns close together in the special election and the general election. He spent double the time knocking on doors and meeting neighbors on weeknights and weekends. For him it was worth it.

“It’s Forest Acres. It’s a city I’ve grown up in, a city I care about, a city that has always had great leadership, and I’d like to invest my time to continue that legacy.”

After attending college in Virginia and working in the banking sector in Charlotte for seven years, Kibler and his wife moved back to Forest Acres to start their family. Now you’ll find Haskell and his wife, Rula, raising their two young sons just down the road from the very home where he grew up near Lake Katherine. He’s since left the banking industry and works as a principal in the commercial real estate company started in part by his father in Columbia in 1987: Wilson Kibler.

Haskell sees relying on his professional experience as an asset in his role on council.

“I understand zoning and smart growth. I understand budgeting—a financial real estate background helps with unique city issues that inevitably will arise. You see situations through a different lens.”

Haskell believes the next two years can and will present growth opportunities that will be influential for years to come for the city of Forest Acres. Current council goals include repurposing the mall property, further beautifying the city’s four square miles, and fostering business growth and development. 

“It’s a delicate balance, a smart balance that we need,” he said. “We have to manage growth opportunities with the reality that we are limited by land unlike the city of Columbia or Lexington. We have a unique opportunity right now to elevate our identity and separate ourselves. There have been generations before us that have made Forest Acres what it is today. We are a clean city, a safe city. We have great service, we have great leadership. We have the best parks in the midlands. We should be proud of that. Right now, we have an increasingly growing business community, and we want to be business-friendly. People want to be in Forest Acres, and there is a reason for that.”