Cheryl Moore said she never had a childhood ambition to be a mayor—she described herself as “super shy” as a child—but found it was something that captured her interest as an adult.

She ran for mayor in Flower Mound three years ago but was not elected. This May, she defeated incumbent Derek France. Her experience serving on the Flower Mound Planning and Zoning Commission as well as the town’s Transportation Commission gave her insight into how a town government works.

“I was doing things in the community on a smaller scale, but realized I have the skill set to do more,” she said. “I was doing things for my neighborhood, just the general community, and I was seeing everything change in the community. Traffic was becoming an issue, and losing our green spaces was an issue. My kids were getting older, and I’m like, 'I can do something more.' That’s when I chose to get into it.”

An Ohio native, Moore grew up in Norman, Oklahoma. She attended the University of Oklahoma and earned a degree in physical therapy. She is now pursuing a doctorate of science in physical therapy at Texas Tech University.

She said her 30 years of experience in physical therapy—a career that has expanded in other areas, such as teaching—can help her as mayor. Moore has lived in Flower Mound for 18 years and has been in Texas since 1995. She is married to Jason Jerina and has two children: a daughter, Avery Jerina, a student at Point Park University in Pittsburgh; and a son, Lucas Jerina, a senior who attends Flower Mound Marcus High School.

Community Impact spoke with Moore about a number of issues, such as growth, which she said should be conducted in consideration with the town’s infrastructure and in a way that leaders honor the master plan to respect green spaces and trees.

This interview has been edited for clarity and length.

What did you learn from the planning and zoning, and transportation commissions that can help you as the mayor?

You learn the processes. Learning more the intricacies of the town, the development standards of the town, more of the master plan, specifics on the streets, the technology—that really helps. So then I can have more conversations on the dais as mayor than I could have maybe three years ago.

What do you like most about Flower Mound?

I think the parks and trails are great because you have every kind of trail you want. You have the hard-paved trails, and you have the dirt trails. The [Lake Grapevine] is right here. It’s a big town with everything you could want, but it has that small-town feel.

What changes or improvements would you like to see?

The River Walk is a big deal for me, [as is] the west side of Flower Mound, what amenities are going into that development, and then just that community engagement as we grow.

How do you approach being mayor?

Being a health care practitioner sets me apart from previous mayors. Just because I have so much experience in health care, I align well with all of our emergency services. Having that connect with people that I’ve always had with patient care—like a compassion for people—not that anybody doesn’t have it, but it’s just connectivity that I’m so used to on a daily basis—connecting with families, with people in need. I feel like that's going to bring a different perspective because I feel like we’ve had a lot of business people, and while I have business experience, I think this [career background] incorporates a different level on top of my business experience.