Goke’s resignation set for June 2
By Angie Landsverk
After 30 years in law enforcement, Waupaca Police Chief Tim Goke is preparing to retire from it.
He presented his notice of resignation and retirement to the city’s Police and Fire Commission on March 8.
“We all knew it was coming. Unfortunately, Tim will be leaving. He’s done a great job in Waupaca,” Chair Bryon Gyldenvand said prior to the commission’s acceptance of Goke’s resignation.
His retirement will be effective on June 2.
“It has been an honor and privilege to serve as your police chief since 2004,” Goke wrote in a March 8 letter to the commission, Mayor Brian Smith and the Waupaca Common Council.
When Goke joined Waupaca’s police department on March 3, 2003, he did so as a lieutenant.
He began his law enforcement career in Platteville, where he worked for a couple years before joining Stoughton’s police department, which is where he worked before moving to Waupaca.
Goke wrote, “I have seen the Waupaca Police Department progress exponentially over the last 13 years, not only in terms of professional growth among staff, but also to the infrastructure of law enforcement.
“The expansion of the public safety building in 2005 more than tripled our available space, the elimination of our 24-hour dispatch and consolidation with the Waupaca County Communication Center has saved upwards of $1 million of taxpayer supported money and the integration of technology alone has brought the workstation to every squad providing more efficient and timely response to call for service, just to name a few.”
He said the department’s current staff is of the “highest professional and ethical standard I have ever had the honor to lead. I am extremely comfortable knowing that I leave the police department with a well-rounded, community oriented and professional force.”
Goke hinted of his plan to retire during last year’s budget process.
With the city’s current policy being to wait until retirement payouts are covered before rehiring for positions, Kathy Kasza, the city’s finance director and treasurer, estimates the position could be filled next fall.
She said that is based on her preliminary calculations, which she provided to the Police and Fire Commission.
Gyldenvand discussed the hiring procedure during the commission’s March 8 meeting.
Since the commission has optional powers, it will choose the city’s next police chief.
The common council will then approve the appointment, he said.
Gyldenvand told his fellow commissioners their input will be helpful in determining who will replace Goke.
At its April meeting, the commission plans to discuss choosing an interim chief.
The commission is then expected to choose an interim chief when it meets in May.
Gyldenvand said the interim chief will more than likely be someone who is already a member of the city’s police department.
When the commission meets in June, it will discuss the process for hiring a new chief, he said.