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Tag Archive | "Cedar Springs City Manager"

Former City Manager remembers Shirley Merlington

While serving as Cedar Springs City Manager from 1991-96, I had the distinct pleasure to work with Shirley Merlington. Shirley’s tireless work with the Red Flannel Festival, and the Chamber of Commerce, was a model for all of us to follow. Shirley made sure the Chamber’s relationship with the City was positive and energized. 

This week, I received a call from Shirley’s daughter-in-law letting me know that Shirley had passed away. Since the call, I’ve been reminiscing about the many great things Shirley did for Cedar Springs. 

It’s important that we honor those who made us better. Shirley gave everything she had to the Red Flannel City. 

May we all take a moment and reflect on those who have made Cedar Springs strong. 

Frank L. Walsh

Meridian Township Manager 

Okemos, Michigan

POST SCRIPT NOTICE: The Cedar Springs Post welcomes letters of up to 350 words. The subject should be relevant to local readers, and the editor reserves the right to reject letters or edit for clarity, length, good taste, accuracy, and liability concerns. All submissions MUST be accompanied by full name, mailing address and daytime phone number. We use this information to verify the letter’s authenticity. We do not print anonymous letters, or acknowledge letters we do not use. Writers are limited to one letter per month. Email to news@cedarspringspost.com, or send to Post Scripts, Cedar Springs Post, PO Box 370, Cedar Springs, MI 49319.

* We only print positive letters about candidates one week prior to the election. 


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City Manager receives high marks in evaluation


City Manager Mike Womack

By Judy Reed

A two-year review of Cedar Springs City Manager Mike Womack by the City Council shows that they like what they see.

Womack scored an overall 4.4 average out of 5 possible points during his review last month, which covered personnel management; administrative skills; intergovernmental relations; long range planning; interpersonal skills; relationship with council; and personal and professional attributes.

“I love the direction the city is going,” said Councilmember Molly Nixon. “There is new, beautiful development throughout the city. There is art and green space. More development is planned for Main Street and I am excited to see what will come.”

Mayor pro-tem Pam Conley was also pleased with city improvements. “Over the last year there has been a lot of great work on the revitalization of the Downtown Development Authority, potential new fire station, and working to bring in new business,” she noted.

Councilmember Perry Hopkins did have one word of advice: “He can have his own expectations for a city, but remember what the community wants and needs,” he said.

Womack, a lawyer from the east side of the state, is enjoying his job here as City Manager. “The last two years have been really quite nice. I’ve learned a lot and I have really been able to use my legal and management skills to chart a good economic development direction here in the City. I have developed a lot of good working relationships and friendships with members of the community including the City Council and Planning Commission members.”

So what has Womack accomplished in his two years here?

“I’ve accomplished a ton of stuff but it never feels like I’ve accomplished enough,” he remarked. “The largest single accomplishment that I’ve completed over the last two years was the complete revamping of the Downtown Development District which will pump about $15,000 into improving the downtown this year. The DDA had been unfunded for 10 years previous to this work. I’ve also spent a lot of time and effort making the zoning laws work for citizens and for businesses and not against them. The boards and I have worked to extensively rewrite our zoning ordinances to not only be more business friendly but also to make them easier to understand for non-professional entrepreneurs who want to open a business here in the City.”

What does he think about our community? “I’m continually impressed by the amount of volunteerism that the community puts forward, from cleaning up the parks and roads in the spring to the countless hours invested by board members, citizens and business owners in planning out the community or donating money to community events like the library parties. I’m also thankful that businesses have started to take notice of the good work that the government and local business community is undertaking to bring them in for the citizens of the Cedar Springs area. I also feel very fortunate that my staff, elected officials, board members, business owners and local government officials have, almost entirely, been very easy to work with and all are focused on making the City and surrounding area better for the citizens.”

Womack’s contract is up on August 1, 2019. He said he has had informal discussion with council members about possibly extending it but nothing has been formalized yet. 


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The Post travels to Hawaii

The Cedar Springs Post recently left the chilly Michigan weather behind and traveled to warmer weather in our 50th state—Hawaii—with Cedar Springs City Manager Mike Womack.

He is shown here with the Post in front of the Duke Kahanamoku statue in front of Kuhio Beach in Waikiki, Honolulu, Hawaii. 

We are jealous, Mike! Please bring back some of that warm weather with you!

Are you going on vacation? Take the Post with you and snap some photos. Then send them to us with some info to news@cedarspringspost.com or mail them to Post travels, PO Box 370, Cedar Springs, MI 49319. We will be looking for yours!

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Ray Winnie
Intandem Credit Union


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