City Council recognizes Brown; Shepard; Barker ; Gaddis

by Charles Gerian

The Blackwell City Council met Thursday night for several honors including Blackwell’s Storm Spotters, Street & Parks Department’s Kenny Gaddis, Counselors Chad Shepard and Kathleen Brown, and Blackwell Police Department’s Brandie Barker.

The council also approved the renewal of City Manager Jerry Wieland’s contract.

The meeting began at 6 p.m. with Blackwell Chief of Police Jay Brewer calling Brandie Barker to the podium to recognize her as the Department’s Employee of the Month.

“Brandie is our Court Clerk. She went over to the Police Department a few years ago and took it upon herself to dispatch,” said Brewer, “she was not a dispatcher, initially. She has been helping us out, as we’ve been shorthanded. She has just become state-certified. We couldn’t have covered dispatch without her, she has been a tremendous asset to the department. It’s a joy to have someone that you can always count on like her.”

Next was Street & Parks Department Manager Chuck Anderson, praising Kenny Gaddis following the commendation by a citizen who saw Gaddis working with the street sweeper.

Following those two presentations, City Manager Wieland spoke, calling the Blackwell Storm Spotters to the front of the council chambers.

“This is to recognize the spotters, especially following last week’s severe weather,” said Wieland. “I don’t know that I can put into words how grateful our community is to have you all. We cannot thank you enough. If you save one life, that is worth its weight in gold.”

Wieland then recognized Chad Shepard and Kathleen Brown, as it was their last council meeting.

"These two represent what municipal government should be," said City Manager Jerry Wieland.

"They represent selfless service to the community- they don't do this for accolades or recognition, they do it because they truly care about Blackwell. I know they don't like to be recognized but on behalf of the City of Blackwell we cannot thank these two enough for what they've done."

"Government is never easy. Tough decisions need to be made, major decisions about our city and the future, but these two stepped up, and volunteered, on their own time- on their family's time. And we cannot show our appreciation enough for that."

During the manager's comments, Wieland thanked the surrounding communities for their work during the storms the weekend of April 27.