Michael Schrader receives a certificate recognizing his 41 years of service in a Whitley County public office.

COLUMBIA CITY — The Whitley County Board of Commissioners held a brief meeting on Monday, Jan. 4. to lay the groundwork for the new year. This included the recognition of county employees and the announcement of a coming COVID-19 vaccine.

Scott Wagner, Whitley County Health Department environmental health specialist, reported that small amounts of the vaccine would arrive in the county this week. A preliminary vaccine clinic was held from noon-6 p.m on Wednesday, Jan. 13. Additional vaccine clinics will be held for the next four to eight weeks.

County residents over the age of 75 are recommended for vaccination, Wagner said. They can sign up to be vaccinated via an online portal.

A link to the portal will be available on the Whitley County Health Department’s website at and on Facebook at More information will also be available on those sites.

In other business, the Board of Commissioners recognized the following individuals for decades of service in various Whitley County government offices:

  • Michael Schrader, 41 years
  • Lisa Rossiter, 35 years
  • Linda Jones, 30 years
  • Deborah Beers, 28 years
  • Rosemary Brown, 21 years

Each individual was invited to the front of the room to receive a certificate as the room applauded.

“We’re very fortunate to have the employees we do have working for us,” said chairman George Schrumpf. “We have some (employees) that — it’s amazing the number of years that they’ve been here.”

The board voted to retain Schrumpf as chairman. Schrumpf is the District 2 commissioner representing Columbia, Thorncreek and Washington townships.

The board also elected Theresa Green as vice chairman. Green is the District 3 commissioner representing Jefferson, Smith and Union townships. They serve alongside Chad Banks, the District 1 commissioner representing Cleveland, Etna-Troy and Richland townships.

Other orders of business included Laura Hull’s appointment to serve on the South Whitley Public Library Board and the approval of payroll and accounts payable claims.

The board also announced various board assignments for its three commissioners and approved the minutes from its previous meeting on Monday, Dec. 21.

Due to the holidays, most county officials who were present had no updates to give.

“Hopefully we’ll get through this, get the shots going and get back to whatever normal is here,” Schrumpf said.

The board’s next meeting is on Monday, Jan. 18 at 1 p.m.

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