Grant Bryans

Grant Bryans prefers to look at his job as a means of educating others, despite being the town’s code enforcement officer.

“I don’t want to be that guy giving tickets,” he says. “I want to help you help the town.”

Bryans first moved to Buena Vista in May 2008, driving from Durango and looking for an outdoor guide job.

“I came out, my car broke down and I’ve been here ever since.”

He found the work he was looking for with Buffalo Joe’s.

“I enjoyed being out on the river, meeting new people,” he says. “I was also a snowmobile guide with them in the winter, so I got to do guiding year-round in this valley, which was unique and fun.”

He really enjoyed getting to learn about the mountains surrounding the valley and being in “the playground that was BV.”

In 2015 he finally felt it was time to move on from the lifestyle of an outdoor guide. He tried to find stable work afterwards, doing a number of jobs that had him in the kitchen, dealing with tires and even lifting at Monarch.

By February 2017, Bryans found a new kind of job that appeals to him, one with the government.

“I worked for the parks for a season, really got my interest going in working for the town of BV,” he says. “When the position came open last time, I tried and got it. I didn’t know if I’d like it and I didn’t know what I’d think of it. It turned out to be a really natural, good fit for me.”

Having to tell people no when their plans aren’t congruent with the code can be difficult, which is why he tries to find a compromise so things will work for everyone.

Finding that middle ground can be very hard but all the more rewarding when it happens.

“When people say, ‘It’s been nice working with you,’ that in itself is a great reward,” Bryans says. “It sounds trivial and trite, but it is so true. That thank you is everything.”

In fact, the social interaction is the best part as it lets him educate others on the town’s code and vision.

“I was a Boy Scout for so long, so I got that silly sense of civic pride that was satisfying,” he says. “It feels good to serve and help and do what I can to help BV become the best that it can be.”

On that note, Bryans can’t see himself doing this kind of job in any other community. Buena Vista has “always been very welcoming and warm towards me. I broke down here, and they’ve taken me in and helped me survive and given me opportunities for jobs.”

This community has taught him “what home really is.”

Work takes up a lot of time, but when he can he plays with his dog, plays hockey, hunts or fishes. As with so many others attracted to the mountains, being outdoors helps him recharge.

Bryans loves all of the town events for how they make Buena Vista unique.

“Gold Rush Days is such a phenomenal event. The burro race is so unique to BV. I love the community and camaraderie of the Fourth of July. I love that we can travel almost anywhere in this valley and find a unique spot to watch the fireworks. I love all these events, and I look forward to working on all the events and seeing what they can do to make this town even more special,” he says.

Need to discuss something over the town code? Bryans encourages everyone to come and talk to him.

“I like seeing people come in with their ideas rather than people seeing me come to them because they tried without talking to us first. It’s a lot easier to find a compromise early than it is after the fact,” he says.

“We are approachable, we’re not scary. Come talk to us. We’re here to help you.”

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