By Sue Moore
Ken Schippers, Vicksburg’s Interim Village Manager, has received the 2014 Mercer Munn Award from the Vicksburg Rotary Club.
Named for the late Mercer Munn, a longtime Rotary member and owner of the Munn Agency, the award is given annually to one non-Rotarian who makes significant contributions to the community.
“Schippers possesses unique characteristics not frequently found,” said Village President, Bill Adams. “He is dedicated to serving the residents and visitors of the Village of Vicksburg. He is giving with both his time and money to help those less fortunate. He does not demand payment because his satisfaction comes from a job well done. He has earned respect through his knowledge and personal contributions to the community over the past twenty years.”
Several years ago, Schippers began collecting funds for Christmas baskets to give to residents in need. Then, he would purchase the baskets and see they were delivered. His interest in helping those in the community started an annual tradition still carried on today by South County Community Services.
His dedication to maintaining the quality of life in Vicksburg is truly appreciated said others who nominated Schippers for the award named after a man who deeply believed in this community.
In his nomination letter, Adams wrote, “When the Village of Vicksburg created a strategic plan this past year, he was identified as our greatest strength and threat, all at the same time. Strength because of his overall knowledge and everything he does for the Village; and a threat because if he were lost to our community, we know of no one to replace him.”
Recently, when the Village found itself in a deficit financially with no village manager to oversee the recovery, Schippers stepped up and agreed to do what was needed in order for the Village to succeed. Schippers is always there to lend a helping hand whether it is installing a new fence at the cemetery, repairing toilets, or unfreezing pipes, much of it on his own time, others said.
He is honest, hardworking, and devoted to improving Vicksburg, his home town. In an interview of about a hundred citizens and businesses in 2012, they all rated the public works department and Ken Schippers as a 10. He is committed to serving Vicksburg residents and making them all feel special according to the submitted nominations.