As the new year arrived, I was reminded of how blessed I am to have spent my entire professional local government management career in Oakland County. And there was no greater reminder than a dinner party I attended this past Sunday evening at the home of Jerry and Betty Stone of Lathrup Village. You see, Jerry Stone was the City Administrator of Lathrup Village for thirty-three years. He just may hold a record in Oakland County, or maybe in the state. Jerry hired me for my first local government position as Lathrup’s Assistant City Administrator back in 1990, a position I held for nearly seven years before accepting a position with the City of Southfield. Jerry retired a couple of years after I started there.
For nearly twenty-six years, we have maintained contact and see each other at least two or three times a year. Jerry provided the foundation for what is now the start of my twenty-sixth year in local government management. Jerry was and remains ALL ABOUT LATHRUP! When he was the City Administrator, Lathrup Village was his baby. He taught me a great deal about the awesome responsibility associated with being the chief administrative officer of a local government and the lessons I learned from him a quarter century ago still remain with me today. His wife Betty was the quintessential First Lady of Lathrup and as you can see from the photo in this blog, continues to be all these years later. We were joined by two other couples who had for many years also lived in Lathrup Village. Visiting the Stone’s for the holidays is a great reminder of how my career got started, and frankly, energizes me for the year ahead leading the Auburn Hills community.
Tom Tanghe, City Manager