GREENVILLE — Cake was served and hands were shaken as colleagues and members of the public gathered Tuesday at Greenville Municipal Building to say both “Goodbye” and “Good Luck” to outgoing Mayor Mike Bowers.
Bowers’ final day on the job is August 31. He is leaving to become Economic Development Director of the Community Improvement Corporation of Darke County (CIC). The Darke County Republican Party Central Committee will be tasked with choosing a replacement who lives within Greenville’s city limits to finish Bowers’ term.
“It’s just been a great eight and a half years,” said Bowers. “A great team is in place and will be able to take things forward. Whoever comes and sits in this seat will have a pretty easy time of it.”
“As I’m not going that far away, I’ll continue to work with and for the City of Greenville. They don’t get rid of me that easily,” he added, laughing.
Many city employees were on hand at the reception to wish him well.
Greenville Safety/Service Director Curt Garrison said, “On behalf of all the employees, we wish Mayor Bowers the best. We look forward to working with him in his new position.”
“It’s sad. I really enjoyed working with him,” said Greenville Clerk of Council Vicki Harris. “I got to deal with him mostly in council, but it’s been a good time. He makes work fun and enjoyable.”
Greenville City Council President John Burkett said, “We’re sorry to see him go — I wish him the best. He has been fun to work with, we’ve had a good time during his tenure here, things have worked very well. We’ve been pleased with all the progress that’s been made in the city.”
“He has a considerable amount of insight into the city and county area, so that’s going to be a good thing,” Burkett added.
Local leaders offered Bowers praise for his work as mayor.
“I’ve known Mike for a number of years and have appreciated his commitment to the city and the community as mayor,” said Brethren Retirement Community President/CEO John L. Warner. “I know that he will do a fine job as the new economic development director. In the future, I will look forward to working with him in that new role.”
Darke County Commissioner Mike Stegall said, “Mike has been a good friend for years. He’s done an outstanding job with the city. There’s no doubt he’ll do an outstanding job with Economic Development. We’re looking forward to working with him.”
Darke County Economic Development Career Pathway Coordinator Lisa Wendel said she is excited to work with Bowers more collaboratively.
“I think this will be a smooth transition, because he had worked so closely with [previous director Marc Saluk] on almost the same initiatives we’re going to move forward on,” she said.