Letter: Alderman Ponschok’s work won’t be forgotten

To the editor:

I have a confession to make. I’ve lived in Shawano, in the same house, for the last 16 years, and until this past fall had no idea who my alderperson was. A little shameful, yes.

We were busy raising our family, running a family business, watching our kids’ sports, and trying to keep our dogs out of the neighbor’s lawn. I’d never given much thought to the behind-the-scenes operation of a city government. I also had given little consideration to the actual people who tirelessly serve our community.

This past fall I decided it was time to change that. I made the decision to run for our Common Council. While collecting signatures, I ended up speaking with many residents of District 4, and they taught me so much about the man behind our district. I discovered he was not only an alderperson, he was also a mentor, a neighbor, a teacher, a respected colleague and a friend.

On Dec. 1, I knocked on Fred Ponschok’s door and introduced myself. His first words to me were, “You are the last person I expected to see here.” I laughed and a friendship was forged.

Over the last few months, I’ve had several occasions to visit with him and have been privileged to learn who he really is.

I would like to thank Fred for his decades of dedicated service to the Shawano community. Not only has he served on the Common Council for 17 years, but he has also served in our school district, worked with our youth and our veterans, and chaired a number of committees. His influence has been felt far beyond the council chambers.

Fred, your legacy is one of commitment and love, and I promise you could never be forgotten.

Lisa Hoffman,