Sean Gifford has been appointed interim mayor of Three Forks.

Gifford plans to spend his term, which expires at the end of 2019, learning about city operations and getting to know city employees.

“I am looking forward to being able to serve my community,” he said.

The mayoral vacancy opened after Steven Hamilton resigned on June 2, saying he needed to prioritize his duties as a teacher and volunteer debate coach for Three Forks High School.

The Three Forks City Council this week selected Gifford in a 4-2 vote after the first vote ended in a tie between Gifford and council member and former mayor Gene Townsend, according to The Three Forks Voice.

Gifford, Townsend and Carl “Bud” Mohler Jr., who also applied to serve as interim mayor, are all running for mayor in the November election. Whoever is elected will serve until 2021 when Hamilton’s term was set to end.

Gifford has lived and worked in Three Forks for a decade and owns V-42 Fitness with his wife, Kira Gifford. He has served in the United States Army National Guard with his most recent deployment in 2017 to Afghanistan.

“I plan to retire from the military soon and want to continue to find ways to serve as I transition to civilian life,” he said.

Gifford previously worked as a Three Forks police officer, Three Forks firefighter and Gallatin County sheriff’s deputy.

He is a member of the Three Forks Ambulance Board and volunteers with his daughter at the Headwaters Heritage Museum each week.

“I want to find creative solutions for dealing with the rapid growth we’re experiencing in Three Forks,” Gifford said. “It’s just like the rest of the valley where we need to find ways to invest in operations and infrastructure to accommodate more people.”

Perrin Stein can be reached at 406-582-2648 or at pstein@dailychronicle.com. Follow her on Twitter @PerrinStein.

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