I gotta admit – when I first sat down to write this, I thought it was going to be easy. “Piece of cake” sez I, I write all the time; just sit down, flick on the old keyboard and go.
That was last Wednesday.
Here I am, at the last day of month and hence the last day of my tenure as Supervisor of this budding little metropolis, still struggling with what to say and how to say it. But enough. This has gotta get done and I gotta do it so bear with me, I have no idea how this is going to turn out…
Depending on which statistic you believe, the average age for human beings in the U.S is 38… point something. Let’s not split hairs. So at the tender age of 73, I have outlived – by almost double – the average life expectancy for citizens of the U.S. I find that quite marvelous, especially considering in my formative years I did not expect to live to be 35. Seriously. And I almost didn’t on several occasions, too. But here I am at yet another fork in life’s road examining my recent past while anticipating the future. I gotta tell ya, folks, this is a great place to be!
My life has been blessed beyond measure and I am deeply appreciative both for my unbelievable wealth of experience and even moreso that I recognize it. I thank my parents for that, especially my mother who taught me that gratitude is the soil in which all good things grow. And I have more to be grateful for than the average bear, especially during these past 6 years.
Throughout my life my interests have been both profuse and eclectic; I have been an AFL-CIO member (long enough to earn a pension), in union management and an elected union representative. I was a 24K, card carrying, dyed in the wool liberal democrat, and a political activist. I’ve worked in factories and businesses of every stripe, I’ve been in management, management consulting, in sales, security and security consulting and I’ve owned several businesses – some of them were even successful. I’ve been self employed and I’ve also employed more than 130 people at one time. You could say I’ve been around the block, I guess. But the position that has had the most profound impact on me was this one – my work as your Township Supervisor.
At this point I need to re-iterate an oft repeated paean of mine concerning the Admin Team I’ve had the privilege of working with here: specifically Sheryll Dishaw, Judy Clark and Bob Jacokes. I’ve worked with literally thousands of people in my 73 years, but I have never worked with a more conscientious, meticulous, honest, diligent or dutiful crew in my life. Ever. It’s a shame they rarely got the appreciation they so richly deserved.
For those who reflect and those who aspire, attaining public office is profound. Absolutely profound. There is no other work on this planet where in order to acquire the job, you have to earn the trust and confidence of a majority of people whom you aspire to represent. Once you achieve that, then you must strive to earn their trust and earn it continuously. For me, the sheer awesomeness of that concept was staggering, it was astounding beyond comprehension. Clearly, I wouldn’t make it as a politician.
So as I set my sights on this, the (hopefully) last leg of my life’s journey, I want to thank each an every one of the more than 1,300 of you who, with your votes, opened the Township door for me. I will forever be deeply grateful for your faith, trust and confidence in me and I trust my service to you and this community has been beneficial. My intent was to leave this position better than I found it and to leave it in capable hands. I think I’ve done that, posterity will be my judge.
And now if you will excuse me, there are quite a number of Lake Superior Trout who are calling my name…it’s a chorus actually!
Godspeed and Farewell Concord Township!