Thank You for Your Service | TheUnion.com

Thank You for Your Service

As we end this Board year and elect or appoint new Board members, Kim and I wanted to take this opportunity to thank the two departing Board members: Fred Peterson and Jack Valentine, for their service to the community.
Fred Peterson served his full three-year term on the Board. An increasingly rare occurrence as pressures on, and insults toward, both Board members and their families have increased. During his term he expended significant effort on behalf of the entire community, assisting in both fixing a number of problems and positioning us to address others depending upon future Board focus and follow through. The list of matters on which Fred worked is too long for this letter, but includes work on Holub Ranch, the clubhouse, the lake, flooding, finances, the reserves, public works, sharing the role of acting General Manager, and hiring a new General Manager.
I first met Fred when he served on the Public Works Committee (PWC) and I served as the Board liaison. Fred exhibited tremendous knowledge of the Public Works issues, so when he was elected to the Board it was natural that he become the liaison to that committee. As noted above, among the many projects on which Fred worked were his efforts surrounding a number of the flooding issues impacting the community. While others may have been sitting in their home spending time on social media, Fred was out in the rain and mud examining impacts with Public Works staff and members of the PWC. This work led to the ultimate approval by the Board of a plan to address flooding issues, including the potential practical and legal issues associated with Unit 4 drainage in light of changes contemplated by NID.
Unit 4 work is funded by Special Assessments. Fred does not live in Unit 4 and had no interest but to do what is best for the community as a whole. This is just one example where Fred's expertise, work ethic, and integrity assisted the community. That Special Assessment was again unanimously approved by this year's full Board as part of the current year's assessment. More funding will be necessary over the next couple of years to complete the project.
Fred spent considerable time this past year with the Lake Committee helping to address the complex issues associated with last year's e-coli problem. As he leaves the Board I sincerely hope he continues to assist the community as those issues remain of critical importance, have yet to be resolved, and we have few members with his expertise.
On a more personal note, I would be remiss if I did not once again publicly thank Fred for his willingness to assist me in performing the role of acting General Manager. I could not have done that job without help from him and Chris Martin. Fred will be missed.
I also wish to thank Jack Valentine for his willingness to volunteer when Chris Martin was unable to complete her term. I worked with Jack during his time on the finance committee. Jack and his wife, Kathie (a member of the Parks & Recreation Committee), were also constant attendees and contributors at Board meetings. When Roger Stover

resigned several years ago due to health reasons, Jack Valentine was among the almost 30 people we asked to consider standing for appointment. Due to both health and family issues Jack was unable to volunteer for that Board position. After many months of searching for a volunteer that position was filled by Chuck Murphey.
However, while not able to then volunteer for the Board, Jack, along with Chuck Murphey, Hal Tiegs, and myself became part of a work group working with staff focused on addressing the then increasing amount of unpaid assessments that had accumulated over many years. What we at times refer to as bad debt. Several years and a lot of effort by staff and this work group went into cleaning up our records as well as moving more aggressively to recover the monies owed. Our current General Manager recently reported those efforts have recovered approximately $165,000 in the last 18 months. Equally important, it was reported that those efforts enabled us to reduce our budget for bad debt by $70,000, which had an immediate positive budgetary impact on both last fiscal year's results as well as future needs to reserve such funds. Jack helped start and then maintain that effort. His hard work, along with other members and staff have set us on the right course moving forward.
When for health reasons Chris Martin needed to resign with one year left on her term, Jack immediately came to me and offered to volunteer. While he still had health and family challenges he thought his own health had improved enough he could help us for one year. One other member also immediately volunteered, but dropped out just before the Board meeting as that volunteer believed Jack was exceedingly competent to fill the role. Jack had been on a previous Board, served on the Finance Committee, and, as noted, was then working on our bad debt issues, which needed continued Board focus.
Jack soon found himself thrust into the role of Board President, which he volunteered to perform. A job that can bring additional burdens, and certainly did this year. In my view Jack fulfilled the job of President admirably until health again became a concern and he needed to slow down. I have noted those on social media who appear to be adept at criticism of various Board members but who when asked to serve always have an excuse. Yet Jack set aside his health and family issues to help us in a challenging time.
Jack, Fred, and I didn't agree on everything and probably still don't. But that's not really the point. Their commitment to the community, their work ethic, and their integrity are second to none. Criticism is easy. Stepping into the ring, examining facts, staying focused, making difficult decisions, and carrying out those decisions are the hard part. The community should thank both Fred and Jack for their willingness to step in and do the real work. They both contributed to positive changes. Their families need to be thanked as well as none of this work gets done without family support and I'm certain Sara and Kathie were with them all the way.
Thank you Fred, Jack, Sara, and Kathie!

——Mike and Kim Rodriguez