Bexley News

Weber reflects on 24 years of service

By ThisWeek Community News  • 

Upon retiring from Bexley City Council after 24 years of service, outgoing President Rick Weber thanked the community for electing him to six consecutive terms.

Weber reviewed the city's accomplishments during his tenure, which has included the construction of the police facility at 559 N. Cassingham Road and the David H. Madison Community Pool at Jeffrey Park.

Weber said he enjoyed working with his colleagues on these and other developments for the past two decades.

"I calculate I have attended 524 regularly scheduled council meetings, missing only two due to family emergencies," he said during his last council meeting Nov. 19. "During those and many additional meetings and events, I can honestly say I have enjoyed it all. I have worked alongside outstanding council members and city officials."

Weber noted he served with four mayors during his tenure: David Madison, John Leonard, John Brennan and current Mayor Ben Kessler. Kessler presented Weber with a proclamation declaring Nov. 19 as Rick Weber Day in Bexley.

"On this day, council President Rick Weber retires his gavel, having served the people of Bexley fairly, consistently and with a refreshing amount of common sense and good-humored leadership," Kessler said.

Mark Masser, who has served on council since 1986, said he often disagreed with Weber on various issues over the years but they always maintained mutual respect.

"I think it's because we both love the city so much that sometimes we wanted to get to the same place," but had different ways of getting there, Masser said. "And I learned in the last few years that, more than not, (Weber was) probably right and I was wrong."

Former Councilman Jeff McClellan, who served with Weber for 20 years, said he also occasionally clashed with Weber yet maintained a productive relationship.

"A lot of people assumed that we were always in lockstep on issues," McClellan said. "I don't think anybody disagreed with me more frequently than Rick did."

Councilman Matt Lampke, who chose not to seek re-election this year and also will leave council at the end of his current term, told Weber that he appreciates the guidance Weber has given him since he started on council in 2009.

"From my first campaign, we sat down for a coffee and you gave me some insight," Lampke said to Weber. "Hearing your reasoning, you've been a voice of influence for me on this council and the way I vote and represent the citizens."

Weber thanked the community for its support and also offered gratitude to his wife, Barb, their children and extended family, who were in attendance at the Nov. 19 council meeting.

"As I continue my other career as a Realtor, I expect this legislative body to keep our streets safe, our trees plentiful and our educational institutions happy so that the strong demand for our housing continues," he said. "This is not my eulogy, but a thank you to this community for giving me six terms and 24 years to give relatively little back compared to what it has given me and my family."