Weyauwega Mayor Don Morgan is being challenged in the April 2 election by Alderman Mike Kempf.
Morgan announced his plan to seek another term during the November meeting of the Weyauwega Common Council.
“I have been asked by several community leaders to consider running for one more term for mayor of the city of Weyauwega. Their reasoning is we will have a new police chief in January, we hope to have a new administrator around the same time, and we will have a new bookkeeper/accountant/deputy treasurer replacing Gloria (Gerlach) in December.
“Electing a new mayor seems to be too much change at one time. They would like to have a seasoned mayor with ample time available to assist the new administrator in facilitating their transition to the needs of the city of Weyauwega.
“I am responding to those requests and announcing my intention to run for another term as mayor of the city of Weyauwega,” he said at the time of his announcement.
This April will mark the completion of 21 years of service for Morgan.
For 15 of those 21 years, he served as an alderman, including five years in the 1970s. Morgan has been Weyauwega’s mayor the last six years.
Born and raised in Poy Sippi, he and his wife, Beverly, moved to Weyauwega in 1967.
Morgan retired in 2007.
Prior to retirement, he had a Sinclair bulk petroleum route. In 1966, he bought the service station at Sunset Curve.
Morgan also serves on the Waupaca County Board and was re-elected to his second term on the board last April.
When asked what challenges he sees the city of Weyauwega facing during the next two years, he said, “I think the two biggest projects are increasing the capacity of the wastewater treatment plant and working with Agropur and Performance Industrial Products to faciliate the expansion of both businesses. We also need to continue working toward our City Hall project. It’s pretty crowded there, and there’s a lack of privacy.”
Kempf has served on Weyauwega’s Common Council since 1994.
In addition to running for mayor, Kempf is up for re-election this spring in the city’s Ward 3 and is running unopposed for that seat.
Deputy City Clerk Becky Loehrke said if Kempf were to win both races, he would have to choose which position he wants.
“I’m looking for a change in the community,” he said as to why he is running for mayor.
He said with a new police chief in place, a new city administrator starting soon and a new bookkepper/accountant/deputy treasurer, the addition of a new mayor – as well – would bring new ideas to the city.
“I think we need to hold back on some of the spending. I just think there are some new ideas in the city,” Kempf said.
Born and raised in rural Weyauwega, Kempf is a graduate of Weyuwega-Fremont High School.
After high school, he worked with his parents at A & E Electric, doing electrical work.
That was followed by a position in the Weyauwega-Fremont School District before Kempf made a career change and began working in the propane business.
He worked at Ferrell Gas and then at Garrow Propane, in Appleton, before joing Charter Fuels. Kempf is going on his sixth year at Charter Fuels and is the Waupaca branch lead.
Kempf has lived in the city of Weyauwega since 1980. He and his wife Nancy have three daughters and three grandchildren.
He said city residents encouraged him to run for mayor.
Kempf believes the biggest challenges the city will face during the next two years are attracting new businesses into the city’s industrial parks and encouraging more residential development.
He also wants to see taxpayers’ money spent more wisely and to see more input from community members.
“You have to work with the community,” Kempf said.
The deadline for candidates to file nomination papers was 5 p.m. Wednesday, Jan. 2.
In the city’s Ward 1, incumbent James Zandrow is seeking re-election and is unopposed.
In Ward 2, former alderman Nick Gunderson is running unopposed. Incumbent Amy De Santis is not seeking re-election in that ward.