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Village Board fills vacant trustee seat

Twelve residents apply for position

June 26, 2008

Sean Cummings will be the newest Shorewood trustee.

The Village Board on June 18 appointed Cummings as the replacement for former Trustee Michael Phinney, who left the seat in April after four years on the board.

Phinney was re-elected to a second term in April 2007. He resigned for personal reasons.

Cummings will serve the remainder of Phinney's term. Cummings will be up for re-election in April 2010.

He was not available for comment.

Involvement a plus

Board members opted to appoint Cummings, rather than hold a special election, partly to save money, Village President Guy Johnson said.

A total of 12 people - Cummings, Mark Clingaman, Daniel Daemmrich, Peter Grimes, William Kohl, Patrick Linnane, Brady McMonigal, Tim Ryan, Ryan Scott, Brad Simenz, Niki Skinner and John Toutenhoofd - interviewed for the spot.

After nearly five hours of interviews, the board selected Cummings.

Cummings' application and interview pushed him over the top, board members said.

Cummings is president of Brunswick Bowling and Billiards in Bristol, Wis. He also is co-chairman of the Drive to Distinction, or D2D, Committee, a community effort to raise nearly $5.6 million to renovate Shorewood High School's outdoor athletic facilities.

"We liked the fact that he was very involved in the community," Johnson said. "We thought he would bring a good perspective to the board, with his business background."

Community's challenges

In his application, Cummings highlighted attracting and retaining residents with school-aged children to the village as one of the three greatest challenges the community faces.

Among the other challenges Cummings sees before village were maintaining quality of life services while bringing the village's tax rate closer in line with comparable communities; looking at greater shared services and expansion of fee-based programs; and balancing the needs of a diverse constituency while gaining consensus on long-term goals and objectives for the community.

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