By Matt Mackinder
Clarkston News Editor
INDEPENDENCE TWP. — Matt Stoian’s resignation from the Independence Township Board of Trustees last month left a seat open on the board, giving way to a special meeting Nov. 15 that saw seven township residents interview for the spot.
After all seven had interviewed that night, Jim Tedder was appointed unanimously to serve the term ending Nov. 20, 2024.
“I’ve had a real passion for service for much of my life,” said Tedder. “Going back to being actively involved in my own children’s lives to being a Cubmaster to being a wrestling coach and, of course, public service. I’m just excited to express my passion and desire to serve on this board once again.”
In addition to Tedder, Belinda Billings, Patrick Kittle, Jr., Mark Petterson, Bruce Quigley, Terry Whitney, and Ken Zurek all applied to serve with the township board.
Tedder, a township resident just shy of 18 years, was first appointed in the fall of 2018 to replace Trustee Andrea Schroeder, who was elected to the state House of Representatives to represent the 43rd District. His appointed started on Jan. 1, 2019 and he stepped down that May after accepting new employment that required him to resign. He served in the House four years.
“I want to continue to be a good steward of taxpayer money here at the township level,” Tedder said. “I think as a perennial matter, township funding always remains an issue. I love the unique and rural character of this community but at the same time understand development must take place. I feel like I have a rational balanced approach to that. As a son and son-in-law of aging parents, this is a township like many with people living longer, there is a very strong voice for our seniors.”
Prior to deciding on Tedder, Township Trustee Sam Moraco applauded those that showed interest in serving.
“When people have had enough, they get off the couch and step up,” Moraco said. “I appreciate it.”
Stoian stepped down last month after he was diagnosed with cancer.
“I wanted to inform you that I was recently diagnosed with cancer and will start treatment soon,” Stoian wrote in a letter to Township Clerk Cari Neubeck dated Oct. 19. “Regretfully, it seems that I won’t be fit to serve our community for the foreseeable future. As always, I trust in my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. While I don’t understand what’s happening or why, I know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love Him and are called according to His purpose. I thank you all very much for allowing me to serve with you on the board. We all know I had no experience, but you took a chance on me. It was a growing experience, and I’ll always remember it.
“Please accept this as my resignation from my position as Township Trustee.”
PHOTO: Jim Tedder. File photo