By Rod Rose The Lebanon Reporter
---- — Three candidates for Boone County’s Veterans Service Officer position made presentations to the Boone County Commissioners Monday, Nov. 25. Don Campbell, the current VSO, is retiring at the end of the year.
Pamela Anderson, Mike Spidel and Dennis Williams were finalists from a field of seven applicants for the job.
Each gave a summary of their careers, military experience, and answers to questions submitted earlier by the commissioners.
Anderson and Spidel originally served in the Navy; Anderson also served in the Army. Williams spent four years on active duty, followed by a two-year reserve tour in the Air Force.
Anderson and Williams then served with the Indiana National Guard while pursuing civilian careers. Spidel recently retired from the Lebanon Fire Department.
Anderson said her focus would be to make Boone County veterans aware of the benefits available to them. She’d make an effort to reach female veterans, “which hasn’t been done that much,” Anderson said.
After enlisting in the Army National Guard, Anderson was the first female supply sergeant at the Army Aviation Support Facility, Shelbyville. Until recently leaving the position, she was director of the military education program at Vincennes University, she said. While serving at Ft. Benjamin Harrison, she was promoted to second lieutenant.
Spidel has worked with Campbell, he said. Among his projects would be to create a database of Boone County veterans. His organizational skills and contacts developed through the fire service make him “very suited for this position,” Spidel said. His work to help build a firefighter training center adjacent to the Boone County Jail “is probably the highlight of my career,” he said.
Williams would move the veterans service office to his law office, to make it easier for veterans to reach him, and reach out to the veteran’s community through appearances at county festivals and events. During his Air Guard career, Williams was promoted to command chief master sergeant, holding that position in two squadrons.
The commissioners will announce their selection at their Dec. 16 meeting.
ALSO MONDAY, the commissioners:
* Approved a $103,645 contract with Purdue University’s Extension Service to pay part of the salaries for extension workers at the Boone County office;
* Took under review a $173,454 bid, the only one received, for a four-wheel front loader for the Boone County Highway Department;
* Opened bids for various supplies — including petroleum, sand, gravel, culverts, guardrails, posts and other items — from several suppliers, and took them under review;
* Authorized offering $41,300 to former Indiana Pacer Rik Smits for just more than 2.16 acres of land along Ford Road near Eagle Creek, land needed for a new bridge at that site;
* Gave Recorder Nikki Baldwin permission to close her office to the public from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Dec. 20, for training; and
* Authorized Boone County Health Department Administrator Cindy Murphy to close the health department office on Jan. 8, so staff members may attend a community health assessment planned for the Herman B Wells Community Room at Lebanon High School.