Just a few short weeks ago, many people who knew Irene Spanos learned of her terminal diagnosis. For all of us who are her friends and colleagues, the news was shocking . For years, Irene was a tireless advocate in her role in Economic Development with Oakland County. Needless to say, she was part of the team who created the economic success that has been enjoyed by the County for years. She was rewarded by earning the role of Director of Economic Development in 2011, a position to which she was appointed by then County Executive L. Brooks Patterson. In late 2018, she left her position with Oakland County and accepted an appointment as Director of Corporate and Foundation Relations at Oakland University.
On Saturday morning, March 27, Irene passed away. For me, it’s nearly impossible to believe. I have worked with Irene for years on a number of projects and interacted with her at many events. It was a joy to have her at an event in Auburn Hills because when she was in our town, she made us feel like Auburn Hills was the most important place to be. Her enthusiasm was contagious and her dedication to improving “All that is Oakland County” was unquestionable.
We have lost a very good friend and colleague. But there is no doubt that her memory lives on in the many good things that exist around us here in Oakland County. Our thoughts and prayers remain with her husband and her two children, as well as the rest of her family.
Tom Tanghe, City Manager