Bill Kirk has been editor at the Pierce County Herald in Ellsworth, Wisconsin, since 1988. He holds a bachelors degree in journalism from the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire. He previously worked in the media distribution department at the University of Minnesota's Minneapolis campus and is past editor of The Tri-County News in Osseo, Wisconsin.
- Member for
- 2 years 4 months
The Ellsworth School Board finalized the district's 2011-12 budget Wednesday. The total school levy in the final budget is $8,597,688, down from the projected total of $8,619,845 presented at the district's annual meeting in August. The final levy figure represents a 9.27 percent change from last year's budget. It was approved for certification by the board, along with the final budget overall. Superintendent Barry Cain told board members, meeting in special session, some of the budget numbers were still estimates in August.
Customers are often surprised Rosemary Matzek is still serving them at M&I Bank in Ellsworth's west business district. Matzek said Thursday she probably would've retired when her husband, Jim, did, but he died 12-and-a-half years ago before it ever happened. So she continued as a bank employee and her 35th year there will be marked with an open house on Friday, Oct. 28, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., featuring refreshments. "I like to be busy," she explained about staying on-the-job. Read more in the print version of the Herald Oct. 19.
'Safe Routes' update given school board By Bill Kirk An update on the "Safe Routes to Schools" project was given to the Ellsworth School Board early this week. Construction was to begin on the effort, which was jointly promoted by the village, the school district and the former local Rotary club, according to Superintendent Barry Cain. Cain said Thursday a grant received in 2007 extending through 2012 is making the improvements possible. The project involves installation of walkways in the vicinity of the schools within village limits.
Ellsworth Ambulance Service officials have signed a long-term contract with Western Wisconsin Emergency Medical Services (WWEMS). The ambulance service's operating committee updated bylaws to create a joint powers agreement with WWEMS, which is a subsidiary of Regions Hospital in St. Paul, according to Dan Morth, interim local ambulance director. The bylaws had largely been in place since the ambulance service was incorporated in 1978, Morth said Wednesday. Read more in the print version of the Herald Oct. 19.
Foremost is an interest in the law, with youngest son Jens now joining his older brother Lars and father Bob as attorneys on the staff of Ellsworth's Loberg Law Office. However, all three strongly care about the environment, too. That caring showed up again as Jens Loberg followed his career path. As a student at Ellsworth High School, he was inspired about a law career when he participated in mock trial competition, he said Friday.
Experiences, not intentions, prompted Brad and Dawn Lindberg to become pastors. For Brad Lindberg, it was involvement with a youth program that led him to the ministry. Lindberg said Thursday he enjoyed what volunteers with a group were doing for others when he was still in high school and continued helping similar efforts after he entered college. "People kept telling me, 'You should be a pastor'," he said. Dawn Lindberg was working with others in need through ELCA (Evangelical Lutheran Church of America) Global Missions before that participation took her to China.
Area school enrollments decreased across the board compared to last year at this time, according to a report last week from the districts about their official third-Friday-in-September numbers to the state. Public schools are required to provide state education officials with this information annually on that date and it's used for calculating the amount of state aid they receive, among other purposes. Read more in the print version of the Herald Oct. 5.
While Don Johnson continues life's journey, the Pierce County community he long called home continues to benefit from his government service. A lifetime spent here ended early this year when the now-92-year-old Johnson moved from the Hager City house he still owns to Red Wing's Downtown Plaza. Meantime, the contributions he made at many levels culminated with his participation on the Pierce County Solid Waste Management Board (SWMB). Former fellow members recognized him Wednesday for 17 years on that board with a plaque presentation. Read more in the print version of the Herald Sept. 21.
A proposal to update the school district's website was approved by the Ellsworth School Board Monday. Network Administrator Jason O'Neil said the proposal calls for switching from the present platform, called "Front Page," to one already somewhat in use, known as "Sharepoint." The latter is much more interactive, O'Neil said. Superintendent Barry Cain reminded the board increasing communications with the public in a number of ways has been an ongoing effort.
A job at the local newspaper is the latest for Laurel Cox, who's worked in industries ranging from food service to banking to medical. Cox became customer service representative for the Herald early this month. She succeeds Heather McCarthy, now Panther Kids Club and high school special education aide for the Ellsworth School District. Read more in the print version of the Herald Sept. 14.