2011 A year in review

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January: Revenue sharing change

Person of the Month: Greg Curlin. Switzerland County High School agriculture teacher Greg Curlin was serving as the National President of the National Association of Agricultural Educators. He began serving the NAAE as the Region IV Secretary, and then moved up through the ranks to the presidency.

Story of the Month: Revenue Sharing. Switzerland County officials officially reconfigured the way that the county will split its revenue sharing; being wary of what the state may do moving forward. Currently the county divides approximately $10 million per year with various entities. The funds that those entities received in 2010 will be cut by 10-percent in 2011 and another 10-percent in 2012.

Picture of the Month: Restoration. The Julia L. Dumont Club was working to revive and restore the cemetery markers of John and Julia L. Dumont. Moving to Vevay in 1815, Julia L. Dumont began a career of teacher that lasted until 1854; when she then began a career as a writer. The literary club here that bears her name began in 1886.

Honorable Mention for January: New county officials who were elected in November were sworn into office, including Sheriff Roy Leap; County Councilman Tom Conroy; County Commissioner Robbie Smith; County Councilman Jeff Darling, County Councilman Glenn Scott, County Councilman Mike Jones, County Assessor Joan Armstrong, County Auditor Gayle Rayles, and Prosecuting attorney Monica Hensley.

Andy Truitt, Nancy Peters, and Vern Waltz were sworn in to begin four year terms on the Switzerland County School Board of Trustees. Andy Truitt was reelected from Jefferson Township; Vern Waltz was reelected from Posey Township; and Nancy Peters began her first term representing Craig Township.

The Switzerland County School Board heard a presentation on a feasibility study of the possibility of keeping sixth grade students who attended Switzerland County Elementary School at that school for their sixth grade year rather than having them brought to Jefferson-Craig Elementary School for one year before going on to the middle school.

The Switzerland County Lady Pacer varsity basketball team captured the championship of the Rivertown Classic Tournament held at South Dearborn High School. Senior Lady Pacer Trisha Smith was named as the tournament’s Most Valuable Player, and teammates Kristen Perry, Becca Sittloh, and Hayley South earned spots on the All Tournament team.

The Switzerland County varsity cheerleading squad won the Rivertown Classic Cheerleading competition, in which South Dearborn, Lawrenceburg, and Rising Sun squads competed.

The Switzerland County Pacer boys varsity team fell to Lawrenceburg in the opening round of the Rivertown Classic before defeating Rising Sun for third place. Adam Clark was named to the All Tournament Team.

The Switzerland County High School varsity swimming teams were setting all kinds of records in the pool as the boys and girls teams readied for tournament swimming.

Homecoming festivities were held at Switzerland County High School, with Ashlie Gillespie and Blake Whitham honored as the Queen and King. Other candidates included: Shea Dickerson, Halie Thomas, Audrey Furnish, Ciera Browning, and Jessie Ray for Queen; and Jesse Bailey, Tim McAlister, Dylan Griffith, Adam Clark, and Connor Osowski for King.

The Cincinnati Reds annual Winter Caravan again made a stop at the Hoosier Theater in Vevay, with broadcaster Marty Brennaman and second baseman Brandon Phillips among those appearing at the packed theater.

A furnace short caused smoke to fill the hallways of the Swiss Villa Nursing and Rehabilitation Center, but firefighters quickly located and fixed the problem.

Switzerland County Judge Greg Coy reported that his court was processing cases more quickly and spending less money now that the county had its own Circuit Court rather than sharing a judge with another county.

February: New monument

Person of the Month: Andrea Brogan. Andrea Brogan was crowned as the 2011 “Queen of Hearts” at Switzerland County High School, capping off activities surrounding National FFA Week.

Story of the Month: Drug Sweep. A law enforcement drug prevention program coordinated a sweep at Switzerland County High School looking for illegal drugs both inside and outside of the building. Drug dogs walked the hallways and also patrolled through the student parking area; while local, county, and state law enforcement officers were in the building and on the grounds. Law Enforcement officers also announced the implementation of a Drug and Crime Tip Line for citizens: 427-4427.

Picture of the Month: Monument. A new monument honoring soldiers Samuel Woodfill and Eugene Smith was erected near the Veterans Memorial on the lawn of the Switzerland County Courthouse. The monument includes room to honor other county veterans in the future.

Honorable Mention for February: Violence in the country of Egypt hit home for Switzerland County resident and business owner Mohamed Moussa, who was keeping close track of the ongoing upheaval in his native country and on the safety and well being of his family members living there.

Toyota presented Switzerland County ag teacher Greg Curlin with a 2011 Toyota Tundra pickup truck for his use while serving as the President of the National Association of Agricultural Educators. Bill Sullivan represented Toyota at the presentation, which was made at the Switzerland County-Madison Shawe basketball game.

Senior Becca Sittloh made a three-pointer with nine-seconds left to lift the Switzerland County Lady Pacers to a 37-35 Sectional victory over North Decatur.

The Switzerland County Council made a $52,000 donation towards the Thiebaud Farmstead Living History Museum restoration project as part of the matching program for the Jeffris Foundation grant that the historical society received. The Community Foundation of Switzerland County made a $5,000 donation; and Switzerland County Tourism made a donation of $5,000.

March: Lowell Wayne Sullivan passes

Person of the Month: Kimberly Cox. Kim Cox was named as the 2011 recipient of the Lilly Endowment Scholarship, which is administered each year by the Community Foundation of Switzerland County. She will be attending Manchester College in the fall to study accounting.

Story of the Month: Community Servant passes. Switzerland County mourned the loss of Lowell Wayne Sullivan, who passed away after a battle with cancer. A sports star at Vevay High School, Lowell Wayne Sullivan served his country during the Vietnam War, being injured in the fighting. He came home to be a true servant of his fellow soldiers and the entire community; serving on various boards and in other veterans organizations; including being the Commander of the American Legion Department of Indiana in 2002-2003. After years of work with the postal service, he also held the office of Jefferson Township Trustee.

Picture of the Month: Flooding. Heavy rains brought flooding to low lying portions of Switzerland County with streams and creeks overflowing their banks, along with the Ohio River.

Honorable Mention for March:

The Switzerland County Pacer boys varsity basketball team opened Sectional play with a 59-46 victory over Lawrenceburg, avenging a loss to the Tigers in the Rivertown Classic and also Sectional losses over the past couple of years.

Wrestling is a new sport in Switzerland County, and in an effort to serve the community, the members of the Switzerland County Middle School wrestling team assisted the Switzerland County Emergency Management Agency by passing out a supply of emergency weather radios in the community.

Cherry Phillips was honored upon his retirement after 25 years of driving with the “Catch-A-Ride” program through LifeTime Resources.

Joe Deck earned the “People’s Choice” award and Gordon Craig earned the “Judge’s Choice” award at the annual Chili Cookoff sponsored by the Purdue Extension Service.

Darin Scudder was honored as the “Military Person of the Year” by the American Legion Department of Indiana. A resident of Rising Sun, he has many family ties here in Switzerland County.

Jenna Shelley and Moriah McFarland were named as the Switzerland County High School delegates to Hoosier Girls State, which will taken place in June.

Jennifer Johnson, a sophomore at Switzerland County High School, earned a Gold Rating at the Indiana State Solo and Ensemble Contest. It is the highest rating that a student can earn in the competition. She is the daughter of Donnie and Bridget Johnson of near East Enterprise.

Brothers Ronald and Eric Christman were honored as the Conservation Farmers of the Year by the Switzerland County Soil and Water Conservation District. They were honored for their commitment to conservation farming methods at the district’s annual meeting.

Joe Brady was honored with the Silver Star Award for his lifetime of commitment to agriculture at the annual meeting of the Switzerland County Soil and Water Conservation District. Involved in farming all of his life, Joe Brady also worked with the Indiana Department of Transportation for 26 years; and he and wife, Donna, not only farmed; but were active in the 4-H program and horse pulling.

The Switzerland County Public Library held its first annual Lego Building contest; and Dalton Henry earned first place; Titan McCready earned second place; and the After School Fun Club at the Switzerland County YMCA earned third place.

Students at Switzerland County Elementary School brought history to life when third graders presented a “living wax museum”. Students dressed in costume representing a historical character; and also made oral presentations on their character to visitors.

A citizens committee is seeking input into zoning and planning issues as a new county comprehensive plan continues to be developed. An initial plan developed by outside groups was rescinded by county and town officials.

County Commissioners were discussing ongoing problems with the new Moorefield/Bennington Regional Sewer District.

Two companies begin moving equipment into the Markland Business Park, bringing new jobs to Switzerland County. Trenwa, Inc., makes concrete trenches; and Process Systems, which makes plastic pipe processes, were both moving in and hiring employees.