It’s with mixed emotions that I hear that John Doan is leaving Sumner.
I remember many years ago, early 1990s, being introduced to John at some community planning meeting. He had some hairbrained idea that we needed to find out who Sumner was, as if we didn’t know. Well, we went through that exercise and we found something we weren’t expecting – a very different Sumner than what we all perceived it was, and then he put it in a book called the Community Character Strategy Plan. This was John, someone who wanted to figure out who we were and where we wanted to go.
Over the years he would always look deep into issues and try to figure out what was best for Sumner; sometimes we didn’t like it, but in the long run, it was usually good for us.
I tried to figure out why we needed some weird design and development guidelines, but when it came to getting a fantastic-looking Fred Meyer, I knew then why he had pushed to get it developed. Over the years it has saved the look of our city, better than any other document we have, so we need to remember that and thank John for this.
John moved up the ladder at the city, becoming the city administrator, while always looking to make Sumner a better place to live. I don’t know all that John has done for us over the many years, but I have always felt at ease knowing he was at the helm, steering Sumner down a straight path. His shoes will be hard to fill.
I really do wish him all the best in his ventures, but I hope he doesn’t forget this small town that he helped maintain while building it into a great city. Thanks John.