Theodore Geisel, more commonly known as Dr. Seuss, once wrote, “Don’t cry because it’s over. Smile because it happened.”
Well, I have a lot to smile about as my service on the Washington County Board of Commissioners concludes. As is in life, if I have one thing that I should have done more often while on the board, it is simply to say thank you.
Therefore, I would like to thank the nine commissioners, past and present, whom I had the honor to serve with. I would like to thank Jim Schug, Molly O’ Rourke and Kevin Corbid for their stellar leadership of our great county. I would like to thank all of our department heads, our county attorney and our sheriff for their collective outstanding leadership. I would like to thank all of our employees for making Washington County the best county in the state of Minnesota.
I would like to specifically thank the following people, who over many years have made my position as a commissioner easier, more fun and made me smile: Dan Papin, Don Theisen, Wayne Sandberg, Lowell Johnson, Judy Hunter, Jane Harper, Pat Conley, Nancy Brase, Linda Engh, and of course, Pat Raddatz.
A personal thanks to my parents, Earl and Nancy Pulkrabek, who instilled in me the competitive spirit and mental toughness it takes to be in the political arena. I want to thank my former spouse, Lori Pulkrabek, for all of her support and guidance over the years. And thank you to my campaign manager, Damon Dolton, whose endless hours of work on my behalf can never be repaid. And finally, a thank you to former U.S. Sen. Norm Coleman and Mayor Bill Sandberg for inspiring me to run for elected office many years ago.
There are numerous county projects, programs and services that I could point to as successes over the last 14 years. As I step back and look at the macro I think the major, overarching success of the county can be summed up thusly: Washington County enhances our high quality of life by providing excellent core and essential services at low levels of taxation. This is why Washington County is not only a model other counties, but all layers of government. I am glad to have played a small part in this success.
Lastly, I want to thank my constituents and all Washington County residents for bestowing on me the honor and privilege of being a commissioner and trusting me to make decisions on their behalf. For this, my smile will endure. Thank you.
Bill Pulkrabek of Oakdale represented District 2 on the Washington County Board of Commissioners for 14 years. His last board meeting as commissioner was Dec. 18.