On Thursday afternoon, March 23, 2017, I had the privilege of celebrating the ongoing success of Oakland Christian School (OCS). Several representatives from the school board, administration, along with local officials, recognized the role of Oakland Christian School in providing faith-based education to the youth of the greater community. Getting its start in 1968, the school continued to grow and on October 15, 1977, 383 students and faculty began classes in the new spacious school on their 50-acres campus located here in Auburn Hills. Offering a complete K-12 curriculum and a robust athletic program, it’s easy to see that Oakland Christian School is a jewel within our community. Taking the lead on the event were Chamber of Commerce representatives from Auburn Hills, Orion, and Oxford, with all of whom OCS is a member. I also want to recognize Orion Township Supervisor Chris Barnett for joining us yesterday. He also happens to have attended OCS. Congratulations to everyone who is a part of OCS and thank you for the invitation to celebrate with you yesterday.
On February 27, 1994, Auburn Hills Firefighter Dennis Dearing Jr. responded to a fire call which would be his last. Dennis made the ultimate sacrifice that day and lost his life while in the service of this community. Each year, our Fire Department pays tribute to Firefighter Dearing on the anniversary of his death. Today, unlike many past memorials held on February 27th, the sun was shining and the tribute was exceptionally beautiful. Chief Manning delivered some powerful remarks and we were honored to be joined by some of our neighboring fire departments, namely Rochester, Rochester Hills, Oakland Township, and Waterford Township. Dennis’s son Tyler, now a newly sworn-in Police Officer with the Birmingham Police Department, was also in attendance. The Auburn Hills community will be forever grateful for the service of Dennis Dearing Jr. and our continued thoughts and prayers go out to his family.
I have known Greg Jordan for many years and count him among those key staff at Oakland University that are an integral part of what makes OU a great institution of higher learning. So it comes as no surprise to me that Greg is receiving a very prestigious national award.
Greg is the director of Oakland University’s Recreation and Well-Being department, and has been named the recipient of the 2017 National Intramural Recreational Sports Association Honor Award. It is NIRSA’s most prestigious recognition.
The NIRSA Honor Award is given annually to a NIRSA member of outstanding professional achievement who has demonstrated exemplary service to the association during his or her career and has made significant contributions to the field of college recreation. It has been given since 1963 and this is the first time a leader from Oakland University has been selected for the award.Continue reading “May I Say “It’s No Surprise to Me””→
Today was a proud moment for me as I looked on as City Clerk Terri Kowal administered the Oath of Office to seven new Firefighters. Last year, with the wonderful support of the Auburn Hills community, the citizens voted to increase funding for the Fire Department in order to expand what was a traditionally small Fire Department workforce into one that will more adequately protect the citizens, businesses, and visitors to our community. About one year ago, we were a department of 14 full-time Firefighters. Today, we are pleased to announce that with the addition of those just sworn in, including one who was not in attendance today, we have 20 full-time Firefighters which will allow us to staff all three of our fire stations. We still have one more to go very soon to bring us to our desired operational total of 21.
On Saturday evening, I had the privilege of being invited to a dinner party at the home of our friends Jerry and Betty Stone who live in Lathrup Village. I’ve written about them before. Jerry was the City Administrator of Lathrup Village until 1991 when he retired. He hired me in 1990 in my first position in local government management. After all of these years, we still remain in contact.Continue reading “Celebrating Christmas…Again!”→
On my way to a meeting this morning, I stopped by the Starbucks at the northeast corner of Walton Boulevard and North Squirrel Road for the last time. That location officially closed today at 10:30 a.m. in preparation for their move just down the street to their new location which opens at 5:00 a.m. on Thursday, February 2, 2017. The new location is larger, more modern, includes a drive-thru; and weather permitting, has outdoor seating. The new location is at the northwest corner of North Squirrel Road and University Drive. The new building in which the new Starbucks is located is part of a more comprehensive business district of other restaurants and shops which have internal vehicular circulation taking you from building to building. The shopping center in which Starbucks is located can be reached from two different entry locations. If you’re traveling southbound on North Squirrel Road coming from Walton Boulevard, you will need to turn into the entrance a few hundred feet north of University Drive and make your way to Starbucks behind the Applebee’s Restaurant. Otherwise, you can enter off University Drive immediately west of the Starbucks. It will make more sense when you arrive. By no means is it difficult to find because it is on a prominent corner. Auburn Hills welcomes its newest Starbucks to the neighborhood.
It is my honor to announce on behalf of the City of Auburn Hills that Samantha “Sam” Mariuz, Director of Authorities for the City of Auburn Hills, has become one of Oakland County’s Elite 40 Under 40 winners for 2017. Samantha was our intern in the role of Management Assistant for two years. Recognizing her abilities, education, and ambitions, she was offered a full-time position as Director of Authorities one year ago, overseeing the city’s Tax Increment Finance Authority, Brownfield Redevelopment Authority, and Downtown Development Authority. All of these focus on economic growth and development. At 26, Sam in one of the youngest winners of this year’s competition which had more than 400 entries. The “Elite 40 Under 40” program is in its sixth year and was established by Oakland County Executive L. Brooks Patterson. It recognizes young entrepreneurs, community leaders, teachers or any individuals who live and/or work in Oakland County that has made significant contributions to their field and quality of life in the region. We congratulate Sam for this achievement and look forward to her continued career commitment to the City of Auburn Hills.