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September 2020 WMCA E-Newsletter

Wisconsin Municipal Clerks Association Monthly Newsletter

The New




Wendy 2 

I’m going to start with a short story:

A week before the Partisan Primary election I woke up on Sunday morning to a sad text – my deputy broke her ankle was going to need surgery.  She was out – for 2 ½ weeks.  Sunday night I was sitting on my couch like, what am I going to do?  Thinking, thinking….I remember my former co-worker Cathy.  I worked with her at the City of Appleton.  So I texted her.  Then called her. In my calmest panicked voice I screeched, HELP ME!  She showed up two days later.  She had me so organized and ready and helped clean up the election, it was amazing! 

But just a week or two later, I received a similar message from a neighboring Clerk.  Her Deputy was also out on medical leave and she, herself, was unable to be physically at work.  I asked, what can I do to help?  She jokingly said, my Board of Review!  I said, “You got it”.  I had to pay it forward.  I WANTED to pay it forward.

And that’s my vision for 2020-2021.  We are "All in this Together".  Think about it.  The Clerk List, trainings, mentoring, panic phone calls, texts or emails to our Clerk friends.  We are all in this together, we always have been.  It is my hope that we continue the tone Diane set for her presidency and portrayed by her theme song "Stand by Me".  I sincerely and truly believe that most, if not all of us will need someone to stand by them or help them this fall.  Could be anything.  Big or small.  Every lent hand or ear this fall will make a difference.

That being said – I know we are in for a busy fall.  We all know that.  Not only with absentee ballots, constant phone calls, walk-in traffic, rule changes (let’s hope there aren’t any), pending legislation, budgets, taxes, the list goes on and on, but some of you will also be part-time at-home teachers or working from home to provide care for children who are on-line learning one or more days a week. 

With all of the craziness, my expectation and goal for the fall/winter is help to each other.  Help yourself.  Take CARE of yourself.  Our committees will work together to achieve the necessary items: budgets, educational opportunities and legislative communication.  After the dust of November settles and everyone has had some time to breathe a little before the next election, we can hit the ground running.  So for now?  Be there for each other.    

I sure missed seeing you at the conference this year.  I absolutely love all of the educational opportunities, meeting with vendors and celebrating the successes of the year.  What we also didn’t have a chance to do is thank Diane for her leadership through unprecedented times and Barb Goeckner on her Lifetime Achievement Award!  Congratulations!  We, as an organization, are so lucky to have dedicated individuals who care so deeply and give so selflessly.  We thank you.  I’m looking forward to working with Diane on planning the fall 2021 conference.

I encourage all of you to reach out to me or any member of the Board of Directors if you have questions or ideas.  We’d love to hear from you.  In the meantime, stay safe, stay healthy, good luck and smile!

All my best,
Wendy Helgeson WCMC
2020-2021 WMCA President

Changing of the Guard
 Presidents Traveling Plaque

Friday, August 28, 2020, at 9:00 am on a GlobalMeet teleconference, the new 2020-2021 WMCA Board of Directors were sworn in and Wendy Helgeson presided over her first meeting of the year.  2020-21 President  Wendy Helgeson, Executive Director Faith Elford surprised President Diane Coenen at her offices for the meeting.  Past President Diane Coenen swore in Wendy and then President Wendy Helgeson swore in the rest of the Board that was in attendance.
Past President Diane then presented President Wendy with the WMCA Traveling Plaque that she can hang in her office for the next 12 months.
Then President Wendy presented Past President Diane with her plaque and WMCA President's ring.  The plaque's inscription says:

Presented to
Diane Coenen WCMC/CMC
In honor of your year of service to the
Wisconsin Municipal Clerks Association
For your wisdom, leadership, dedication
and obvious pride in being
a Professional Municipal Clerk.

We salute you!

(See pictures below.)  It should be noted that in an ordinary year, the stone in the President's ring is blue.  But in honor of the 40th (ruby) Anniversary, a red stone was put in the ring this year. 

Dianes Plaque-Cvent size   Dianes Ring
The committees for 2020-2021 were also approved at the first meeting of the WMCA Board.  You can see the listings of all of the members on the WMCA website under the "About" button at the top of the website.

2020 Lifetime
Award Winner

 Barb with Nancy3

Nancy Zastrow, Lifetime Achievement Award Committee Member (left) with Lifetime Achievement Award Winner Barbara Goeckner (right)


The Wisconsin Municipal Clerks Association (WMCA) awarded Barbara K.D. Goeckner, Deputy Clerk/Treasurer/Administrator for the Village of Cambridge with the prestigious Lifetime Achievement Award on Friday, September 4, 2020 outside of Cambridge Village Hall.

Barb is a Wisconsin Certified Professional Clerk as well as a Master Municipal Clerk.  She has been a member of WMCA since 1994 and served as an officer for five years including WMCA President.  She has also served on numerous WMCA committees. 

Barb has been a professional municipal clerk for 26 years.  She began her career in government in her hometown of Spooner, Wisconsin where she worked for 20 years.  She has served the Village of Cambridge since November 2018.  Lisa Moen, Village Administrator/Clerk/Treasurer states that Barb has been a welcome and valuable addition and her years of experience have been invaluable to the community.  A peer refers to Barb as a role model both as a clerk and as a person and that her commitment to the Clerk profession and leadership is impressive and has benefited many.

In addition to her professional successes, Barb is involved within her community and church and spends a great deal of time volunteering. 
2020 PEC Award Winners
Another group of award winners that would ordinarily be recognized at the Annual Conference are those that participate in the Professional Education Annual Award Program.  This year's participates were:

Diamond Award Winners - 75 hours plus
JoAnn Marcon, Deputy Clerk, City of Onalaska
Linda Kuhlman, Clerk-Treasurer, Village of Brooklyn
Vicki Olson, Deputy Clerk/Treasurer, Village of Brooklyn
Elena Hilby, Clerk, City of Sun Prairie
Anne Arndt, Clerk, Village of Biron
Kelly Hurst, Deputy Clerk/Treasurer, City of Black River Falls
Leanne Schroeder, Clerk, City of Milton
Jilline Dobratz, Clerk, Village of Jackson

Gold Award Winners - 50-74 hours
Heidi Teich, Clerk, Village of Sister Bay
Janine Micke, Deputy Clerk/Utility Billing Clerk, Village of Kimberly
Debbie Bouma, Clerk, Town of Long Lake
Barbara Schuh, Clerk/ Treasurer, Village of Black Creek

Silver Award Winners - 25-49 hours
Darlene Smith, Deputy Clerk/Treasurer, Village of Jackson
Shellie Benish, Administrator/Clerk/Treasurer, Village of Black Earth

PEC Applicants under 25 Hours
Mary Krahn, Clerk/Treasurer, Village of Reedsville

Atkisson Scholarship Award Winner

 Karen Bell-Atkisson
Another celebration that had to be cancelled this year due to Covid-19 was the graduation banquet at the UW-Green Bay Clerks & Treasurers Institute in July.  As you know the institute went virtual.  The WMCA always announces our scholarship winners at the celebration with an emphasis on our Atkisson Scholarship winner.  This year's winner was Karen Bell, Clerk for the Village of Bell Center.  Congratulations Karen!

The WMCA, with the help of our wonderful Associate members, gave out just short of $16,000 in scholarships again this year for our members to attend the Institute.  There is a criteria that the committee follows when scoring the applicants.  The first year clerk institute member that scores the highest is awarded our prestigious Atkisson Scholarship and their name is placed on a traveling plaque that they get to hang in their office for a year.

For those of you that do not know the history of the Atkisson Award, click here to read all about it.
Let's Look Ahead
to the
WMCA Conference

 2 years in one

While President Helgeson’s theme for the year is “We Are All In This Together”, she has also stated that she wants to share her conference with Diane Coenen, since Diane missed out on the experience this year.  Hence the two themes will come together at the 2021 Conference.  It seems like it was meant to be since the two graphics certainly do work together.

The line up of classes will not be out until next Spring but we do have blocks of hotel rooms with the two hotels that are adjacent to the Brookfield Conference Center and they are ready to take your reservations.  The next paragraph will give you the general idea of the days you will want to be in Brookfield so you can reserve the right amount of hotel room nights.

Please Note:  Since 2021 is an odd year, the WMCA holds a 2 ½ day conference.  The conference will open at 8:00 am on Wednesday morning, August 25, and hold classes through 11:30 am on Friday, August 27, 2021.  Tuesday, August 24th will be our Pre-Conference day.  Registration will open at 8:00 am and the classes will start at 9:00 am.  We generally hold at least three classes: a New Clerks Class, possibly an Athenian Dialogue, and a Master Academy class through the UW-Green Bay.

You can make your hotel reservations on-line through special links that the hotels have given us.  You will want to go to the WMCA website, under Education/Conferences and then go to the 41st Annual Conference page to make your choice.  Click here to go to the hotel page.

WMCA Associate Members are great partners with the WMCA.  The next time you need to purchase a service or software, or other items, check out the vendors ads on the WMCA website on the Municipal Vendor page.

 Issue #10  
 September 2020

For the best display of this E-Newsletter, click here to open as a webpage.

In This Issue

 Certification Deadline is Approaching
 WCMC pinWCPC pin 2

The next deadline to submit your WCMC or WCPC certification applications to the WMCA office is October 1st.  The next due date will be March 1, 2021.

40th Anniversary Sweepstakes    
 2020 Pin
Please watch your mail for an envelope with a 40th Anniversary gift and an offer to enter a Sweepstakes for the WCEF Fund. Since the WMCA did not have a conference this year and we could not have our usual raffles to add funds to the WCEF-Wisconsin Clerks Education Fund, this Sweepstakes is our only way to add to this scholarship fund to help our members attend future conferences and trainings.  Please get your sweepstakes entries back to the WMCA before October 1st and please consider sending in a donation for the WCEF.

Please thank the vendors listed in the mailing for their considerable help with this project.  See one of our $1000 sponsor's ad here.

Serving Alcohol Newsletter Ad (002)

​         Check Out the               
Vendor Demos

Since you cannot attend the vendor demonstrations at the conference this year, the Associates are bringing their demonstrations to you.  Go to the WMCA website and run your mouse over Municipal Vendors in the drop down menu and you will see 2020 Virtual Vendor Demonstrations.   Click on a vendor name to bring up a recorded demo at your convenience.  The demonstrations will be available through September.

Click here to see the virtual vendor demos now.
CareerAds Button
Have You Checked Out the Career Ads Lately?  Have you been thinking of making a change or possibly moving up to a bigger position?  Don’t forget to check out the “Career Ads” section of the WMCA website.  Go to: and click on the blue button on the right side of the website to check out all of the openings around the state.


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