Photo courtesy Barb Kroggel - Outgoing Fabius Township Supervisor John Kroggel receives a commemorative plaque from outgoing Trustee Dan Wilkins during their meeting Wednesday, Nov. 11. Kroggel announced earlier this year he will retire after 11 years in his position.

Fabius board recognizes outgoing supervisor, trustee

FABIUS TWP. — Fabius Township board members honored outgoing township supervisor John Kroggel and outgoing trustee Dan Wilkins at their monthly meeting Wednesday, Nov. 11, Kroggel’s last meeting as supervisor and Wilkins’ last as a current trustee.

Kroggel, who announced in March he would not seek re-election and retire at the end of the year after 11 years as supervisor, will be succeeded on Nov. 20 by current Planning Commission chairman Ken Linn, in time for their next meeting in December. Linn won the August primary election for the seat by just three votes over Wilkins, and ran unopposed in the November general election.

As for Wilkins, who has been on the board for the past eight years, he was appointed to the Planning Commission by the board in a separate motion during the meeting.

During board comment at the end of Wednesday’s meeting, Kroggel thanked Wilkins for his service on the board.

“In eight years, you’ve had a tremendous impact on a number of different things, and I have to tell you I’m delighted that you’re going to be on the planning commission,” Kroggel said. “I think you’ve got a good strong voice that this township needs to hear, you have good ideas, and I’m delighted you’ll be doing that.”

Kroggel then reflected on his service to the township over the past decade.

“It’s been an honor and pleasure to be the supervisor of Fabius Township,” Kroggel said. “I grew up here, I’m very proud of Fabius. Most of the meetings I go to, and I say it truly and straight from the heart that I’m here from ‘Fabulous Fabius.’ I think we are the best township around, and I don’t mind saying that.

“We do a lot of things good, and it’s been quite an experience,” Kroggel continued. “I learned a lot from all the different board members I served with and the people that work for this township in a variety of capacities.”

Trustee Cliff Maxwell thanked Kroggel, saying he has done an “excellent job” as supervisor.

“You’ve brought integrity to the township. You’ve been able to tell people ‘no’ and they still like you,” Maxwell said. “You’ve done a good job, and I’m proud we have a good supervisor.”

Wilkins then announced that the board “got together” and got Kroggel a gift, an “Outstanding Achievement Award” plaque for the outgoing supervisor’s service to the community. Prior to the presentation, Wilkins reflected on Kroggel’s service.

“For those that don’t remember, when John stepped into a job he never asked for, it was a tragic time for our township, and even more tragic for John and his family,” Wilkins said. “He did an excellent job, and he did so many things right. One of the things I appreciate is most of the time, he tends to choose his words wisely. He steered this township through some really difficult times on several occasions. He was captain of the ship, and he pulled it off. I just appreciate the work he’s done.”

The plaque, as read by Wilkins, says “Outstanding achievement, presented to John Kroggel, in recognition of your steadfast leadership and unwavering commitment to Fabius Township.”

“I think that describes him pretty well,” Wilkins said, just before motioning to adjourn the meeting.

Kroggel said in an interview with the Commercial-News he was “humbled” by the recognition.

“It’s been a really nice run, I’ve worked with some terrific people on various boards,” Kroggel said. “I kind of feel like I’ve been blessed to work with so many good people.”

In other business…

  • In his report to the board, Kroggel discussed his meeting with the St. Joseph County Road Commission on upcoming projects on Fabius Township roads. Kroggel said the proposed projects the Road Commission will be working on include Venta Road, Millard Road, Krull Road, Broadway Road, Roberts Road and Hoffman Road, as well as a couple subdivisions. However, the biggest project would be on Coon Hollow Road, which will come up to the board next month in terms of options on how to go about the whole four miles of the road. If they were to do the whole four miles, Kroggel said, there would be “substantial savings” of $37,000 to the overall cost of the project but a “substantial cost” as well of $270,000.

Robert Tomlinson can be reached at 279-7488 ext. 23 or robert@threeriversnews.com.

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