Serving Vicksburg, Schoolcraft and Surrounding Areas
Meet the Candidates – Vicksburg
Vicksburg Village Council
James Earl, Vicksburg Village Council My career experience with two large corporations has taught me the importance of fiscal accountability and teamwork. Since my appointment to the council in February, I have tried to help the team in any way possible. Even a small village like Vicksburg has many different important departments or subcommittees that must properly function to attain success. This takes a well-functioning team to build consensus on what is best for the village. We have a great team in place now and everyone is taking an active role in various portions of the Village. Let’s keep up the momentum.
Karen Nay, Vicksburg Village Council I am a write-in candidate for the Vicksburg Village Council. For me to be elected, voters need to write “Karen Nay” under the Village Council section on their ballot. I have lived in Vicksburg for five years and in Michigan for most of my life. I graduated from WMU with a master’s degree in social work with a focus on policy, planning and administration. At Family & Children Services and at Hospice, I worked with people from all walks of life and in all sorts of situations. I know how important the coordination of government programs and resources can be to individuals and communities. I am now self-employed, with my main focus being to locate rare and antique books throughout southwest Michigan and work towards their preservation by museums, libraries and collectors. I care about Vicksburg and feel I have a lot of offer.
Ron Smith, Vicksburg Village Council I am a Vicksburg native and the third generation of my family to have served the Vicksburg community. Since my appointment to the council two years ago, I have been actively involved in efforts to return Vicksburg to fiscal health and the expansion of business, employment, recreational and cultural opportunities. I have applied my professional skills to issues as varied as compliance with village and state laws, employee salaries and benefits, utility billing, and reorganization of administrative units. Thanks to the tireless efforts of the current council, Vicksburg is on the move. I hope to continue contributing to that momentum.
Julie Merrill – Vicksburg Village Council I am the owner of Rawlinson’s Appliances with a loft above. I am a fifth generation Vicksburg resident. I have a bachelor’s degree in business administration from WMU. I served as chair of a governmental pump augmentation project for the Long Lake Association board. I am a board member of Vicksburg Historical Society and the Vicksburg District Library. Serving on the Village Council is a serious undertaking. I bring over 14 years of experience working on local boards, partnering with the community, the county drain office, Pavilion Township, City of Portage, the DNR, attorneys and engineers. I’ll be an objective listener and active representative working to address health, wealth and safety issues for our village to benefit the village under federal and state law. I will be an active representative working for our village residents and businesses in work sessions, committees and public meetings. I have an excellent attendance record and work ethic and am a fair listener.
Vicksburg School Board
David Schriemer M.D. – Vicksburg School Board I have completed two terms as a Vicksburg School board member. I am married to Paula and have three children, two of whom have graduated from Vicksburg Schools and one currently in Vicksburg High School. I served one term as trustee for the Vicksburg Community Schools Foundation and through the years have mentored five different elementary boys in the Kids Hope program. Since joining the community in 1989, I have donated time to providing sports physicals for Vicksburg athletes.
Deborah Harsha – Vicksburg School Board I am a Battle Creek native and Vicksburg resident for 20+ years seeking election to the Vicksburg School Board. My history of community involvement has been largely family and child focused including teaching Sunday school, being a PTA board member at Sunset Lake Elementary, teaching more than 20 Junior Achievement classes for 10 years, and serving as a member of the Vicksburg Community Schools Foundation. I work locally in the field of procurement/supply chain and am an active member of the Institute of Supply Management (past membership chair and president) promoting education in the field of supply chain management. I am married to Mark Harsha and we have two children in the Vicksburg School system. When not busy with work, children and volunteering, I am busy with My Cheese, Inc., the manufacturer of Vicksburg Cheddar Spread.
Wil Emmert – Vicksburg School Board I have served over 20 years as a VCS board member and am once again excited to seek reelection. Recently retired from Western Michigan University as a grant administrator, I have lived in Vicksburg for more than 40 years. My wife and I have two children who attended VCS from kindergarten through graduation. I have long been interested in and knowledgeable about education. Both of my parents were educators as was my wife. When an opportunity presented itself to serve on the board, it seemed like a logical step. The biggest challenge I see continues to be providing a full and all-encompassing education with the funding provided by the state, in addition to meeting ever-changing requirements. Our continued commitment must be to prudently find the means to meet all the district’s needs in responsible ways. Favorite moments on the board certainly include handing out diplomas to graduating seniors knowing that these students are prepared to meet their future.