Messenger photo by Dianne Garrett
Newly elected Whitehall officials were sworn in during a ceremony December 21 at Community Park. Pictured, from left, front, are Auditor Kim Maggard, Councilwoman-at-Large Jackie Thompson; and standing, Council President Brent Howard, Councilman-At-Large Jim Graham, City Attorney Michael Shannon, Mayor John Wolfe, Ward 1 Councilman Bob Bailey, and Councilman-At-Large Chris Rodriguez. Not attending the event was Treasurer Charles Underwood. They will officially step into their new seats Jan. 1.
Newly elected Whitehall officials were sworn in during a ceremony Dec. 21 at Community Park surrounded by family, friends and co-workers.
Master of Ceremonies was newly appointed Development Director Dan Lorek, who also served under Mayor John Wolfe’s previous administration.
During the evening’s festivities, Wolfe announced that he has appointed Phil Allen as the safety director, and Ray Ogden will remain as director of public services. Both held those positions in Wolfe’s previous administration.
Judge J. Craig Wright administered the oath to Wofe and City Attorney Michael Shannon. Wright recalled hiring the new mayor over 40 years ago as a police officer when Wright was the safety director. The Rev. Carolyn Keck, who offered the benediction and closing prayer, administered the oath to Kim Maggard, as her father, C.G. Barker, held the Bible.
Ronda Howard swore in her husband, Brent, into his second term as council president. Larry Sowers read the oath for friend, Jim Graham as the councilman’s grandson, Nick, held the Bible. This will be Graham’s second term as council-at-large representative.
The Rev. Juan Rodriguez administered the oath to his son, Chris Rodriguez, who left his Ward 1 seat for the at-large position. Jackie Thompson, the new council-at-large representative. was sworn in by close friend and former co-worker, Maria VonVille.
Howard administered the oath to newly appointed Ward 1 Councilman Bob Bailey. Accompanying him were his wife, Naja, and his mother, Carol Corcoran.
Ward 2 Councilman Zachary Woodruff resigned his seat at the Dec. 18 meeting to accept the position of community affairs director.
He and council developed the $49,000 a year position after they created a human resources department this year. His primary function will be as a liaison to the community as well as grant writing, working closely with Lorek.
The public information human resources offices were previously part of one position held by Linda Luft Jones.
Mayor Lynn Ochsendorf had removed the community affairs director’s position from the unbalanced 2008 budget; however, the mayor-elect asked council to restore it to the budget.
Applications will be accepted until Jan. 14 for Woodruff’s unexpired term, which has two years remaining.
Treasurer Charles Underwood was unable to attend, but will begin his second term as the city’s treasurer, along with everyone else on Jan. 1.
The first City Council meeting for the year will be Jan. 2 at 7:30 p.m.