by Dave Woehrle
SUGAR GROVE—The Sugar Grove Village Board on May 7 honored trustee Tom Renk for his 14 years of service on the board.
Renk said he’s retiring to spend more time with his wife, children and grandchildren.
Village President Sean Michels read an official proclamation and then commented on Renk’s years as a Sugar Grove trustee.
“Tom has really provided invaluable service to the community,” Michels said. “In several situations over the years, when we were deciding on issues, he helped us look at small-town problems with a broader, more long-term scope. He provided much-needed insight. We were honored to have him on the board.”
Renk was known for environmental stewardship, protecting local lands through intergovernmental agreements with the Kane County Forest Preserve. He also was a stickler for fiscal responsibility. Prior to his stint in Sugar Grove, functioned as a public servant for Wauwatosa, Wis., for six years in the mid-1980s.
“It’s a bittersweet moment,” Renk said of his retirement from the board. “But I’m sure others will step forward to help make the hard decisions. I want to thank all of my fellow board members I’ve worked with through the years. I’ve always marveled at how sincere these local officials are. They don’t do it for money; they do it because they care about the community. We’ve worked hard as a unified body to diligently serve the village.”
Renk said he’s most proud of keeping Sugar Grove in the black during tough economic times.
“We’ve maintained a healthy budget through the recession,” he said. “We received only a 5.5 percent property tax on the local level, and we’ve been able to stretch our resources to provide excellent public services.”
Renk also commented on Sugar Grove’s reputation as being “hard to work with.”
“I take that as a compliment. We remain strong as a community when we look after our principles, integrity and our interests. We’ve been tough on developers because we believe expansion efforts should pay for themselves rather than taxpayers footing the bill.”
Renk said he will cherish the memories he’s made in the village.
“God bless the village of Sugar Grove,” he said.