Longtime Manchester Councilman Receives Fond Farewell
Kenneth P. Vanderziel exits township council with display of appreciation and respect
It was recently announced that after a combined total of over 18 years of service to the Manchester Township Council, Kenneth P. Vanderziel has called it a career on the governing body, effective Nov. 30.
During last Monday night’s council meeting, Clerk Sabina Skibo began by stating that it was very “bittersweet” and “with regret” that she accepted the resignation letter of Vanderziel just days earlier. The clerk then read from that letter, where Vanderziel expressed appreciation to the town of Manchester and its residents, and regret at his departure, citing “personal reasons” as the cause.
Council President Craig Wallis followed up by saying that Vanderziel "has always conducted himself in an honest, caring way,” and that he possessed more knowledge of the town's history than he would ever have. “I appreciate everything you’ve done for me,” Wallis stated.
Vanderziel, 88, declared that he was sorry to leave the governing body now, in the midst of present challenges and “economic complexities” facing Manchester. “But, I find that I cannot get out to meet the people like I used to, and find out what they are really thinking in conversation,” Vanderziel said.
The councilman added that he would still be available for comments and recommendations for the town after his retirement, but that his age and physical condition had progressed to a point where he could no longer serve the town in the way that he wanted to. “This is a great town, with great residents,” Vanderziel commented.
Councilman Warren Reiter jokingly asked if it was too late to ask Vanderziel to rescind his resignation, and called the departing councilman “his mentor.”
“He’s forgotten more about the town than I’ll ever know. We’ll all miss him,” Reiter said, which was followed by a sustained standing ovation for Vanderziel.
Councilman Frederick Trutkoff also referred to Vanderziel as a “mentor”, and noted that his elder's guidance has helped him through his tenure on the township council. “Thank you Ken, I’ll miss you,” Trutkoff stated.
Skibo later added that Vanderziel certainly deserves the opportunity to move on, but that after knowing him personally for 24 years, the township would greatly miss him.
Vanderziel served on the Manchester Township Council from 1990 to 2002, and then took time away from the governing body. Vanderziel returned to the Township Council on July 1, 2004, and has served in that position ever since.
His term was set to expire on June 30, 2012, but will now be extended to Dec. 31, 2012 – so that his replacement can fill just over one year of an unexpired term before running for re-election next year.
According to the vacancy announcement distributed by the township clerk’s office, residents interested in the council position should submit their resume to Sabina T. Skibo, Township Clerk, 1 Colonial Drive, Manchester, NJ 08759 by Nov. 21, 2011.
Deputy Clerk Jodi Pellicano previously stated that the Township Council would examine the resumes which are sent in, and a vote from the governing body will later affirm their choice for Vanderziel’s successor.