Day retires after 30 years

Sharon Day

Sharon Day
MEEKER I Just shy of 31 years ago, Sharon Day went to work for the town of Meeker as a clerk in the front office at town hall. Over time, she graduated to receptionist, handled water billing, was the assistant manager/planner and was appointed town manager, or town administrator, in 1989.
Day has been focused on the betterment of the town of Meeker for the last three decades. For the past month she has been training her replacement, Scott Meszaros. At the end of the month she will “officially” retire from service to the town of Meeker.
“I have loved my job because it has been so diverse,” Day said. “I have had the opportunity to fill the role of almost all the administrative duties including managing, serving as planner, doing payroll, water billing, serving as municipal court clerk and cleaning person when needed. I have even flagged traffic a time or two when there were major water breaks off regular time. I enjoyed all the duties, although at times it was a little overwhelming.”
What Day considers “a little overwhelming” would likely have been an avalanche of responsibility to someone else. At the beginning of 2012, besides her administrative duties, Day was performing the duties of the town hall cleaning person, a role eventually filled by not one, but two people.
Over the years, Day welcomed the day-to-day challenges of her job.
“I loved what I did all those years. The issues always change and there is no day that is the same. The most challenging was providing the best services possible with such a small staff and budget. I am so happy to be leaving the town with reserve funds for those unexpected expenses that come along and the town totally debt-free! The town’s roads, water system and buildings are very well maintained. The town board’s number one goal for many years has been to maintain the infrastructure that is already in place and only add new services, programs or infrastructure when the town can afford the long-term on-going costs that would be a part of anything new.”
A lot has changed since Day started working for the town of Meeker. Services like recycling, wood chipping and the dog pound have been added with the same size staff the town had in 1981. The addition of the recreation center, improved health care opportunities and parks that “equal or exceed towns with twice the population” are some of the good changes Day has witnessed, in addition to the things that haven’t changed, such as “the sense of community, the compassion of our citizens to assist when things are tough for families, and the spirit of volunteerism, to name a few.”
At the same time, Day knows some changes are required for the community she has served for three decades to prosper.
“The town needs to grow. Our businesses need between 500 and 1,000 more citizens to do well and be secure. It is a passion I have had for years, but have not been very successful in that arena,” Day admitted.
“Although some viewed the economic development group in the early ‘80s as ineffective, they were able to construct the building in which Samuelson’s Hardware is located, which has generated thousands of dollars in sales tax and served as a very valuable resource for this area,” she pointed out.
While Day will miss her “more than 2,500 bosses,” the town staff and board members, she’s excited about the free time she’ll have to spend with her husband, Fred, and their children and grandchildren.
She and her husband, with son Travis and daughter-in-law Katie, own Water Pump Supply and Service, which she “will be getting more involved in.” Katie also works for BOCES. Travis and Katie’s children, Josh and Charlie, are 9 and 11, respectively.
Day’s son-in-law Wade Bradfield owns Meeker Collision. Daughter Marnell works at Pioneers Medical Center. Their son, Nate, 19, is in his sophomore year at the Air Force Academy. Daughter Gracie, 10, is a student at Meeker Elementary School.
Day, after years of devoting herself to her job, is looking forward to “having more time for family and volunteering at the church, assisting in our business, having more time for friends, gardening, sewing and volunteering at the church.”
She has high hopes for Meeker’s future. “I hope that all governmental entities will continue to work together to provide taxpayers the best services possible at the most economical rate with no overlap of services, that the community is able to find other sources of economic stability that will grow population, and that the wonderful people of this community continue to be as friendly and giving as they have been the entire time we have lived here.”
“Being a public servant is one of the most rewarding and challenging jobs available. At times it is overwhelming and thankless, but we wouldn’t have the community amenities we enjoy if it weren’t for all those who are willing to accept those roles and give their very best. I so appreciate what is available for our citizens and am excited that younger members of the community are getting involved to lead us into a new chapter. It is exciting. As a certain insurance company would say, I think Meeker will continue in good hands, and it’s exciting to see what the new chapter will be.”