Calumet’s Connors and Eau Claire’s Bates Named as 2021 WCA “Friend in County Government”

Calumet’s Connors and Eau Claire’s Bates Named as 2021 WCA “Friend in County Government”

Calumet County Board Chair Alice Connors and Eau Claire County Board First Vice Chair Colleen Bates have been named as the 2021 recipients of the Wisconsin Counties Association’s (WCA) “Friend in County Government” award for their longtime work and dedication to Wisconsin’s 72 counties.

This is the highest honor given by the Association to an individual or individuals who have performed outstanding service not only in their own county, but also for the Association and counties statewide. Connors and Bates were recognized on Monday, September 27, 2021 at the WCA Annual Conference in La Crosse County.

“We are so incredibly proud to honor the tireless work of these two extraordinary individuals,” said WCA Executive Director Mark D. O’Connell, who presented the 2021 awards. “Alice and Colleen have been lifelong advocates for counties and our citizens, always seeking out collaborations and solutions to move Wisconsin forward.”

Calumet County Board Chair Alice Connors
Alice Connors has served on the Calumet County Board of Supervisors for the past 40 years (1981) and has served as Calumet County Board Chair since 2014 and was vice chair of the Calumet County Board from 2008-2013. Alice has served for 30 years on the County Parks Commission, 32 years on the Social Services Board/Human Services Board/Health and Human Services Board.

She was the president of the Wisconsin Counties Association from 2009-10; served for numerous years on the WCA Personnel, Finance, and County Organization Steering Committee and WCA Health and Human Services Steering Committee. Alice currently services as chair of the WCA Health and Human Services Steering Committee and is a member of the WCA Board of Directors.

Eau Claire County Board First Vice Chair Colleen Bates
Colleen Bates has served on the Eau Claire County Board for the past 38 years and currently serves as the Board’s First Vice Chair.

She has served on the WCA Board of Directors for many years and currently serves as Secretary-Treasurer. In addition, she is the president of Wisconsin Extension Association (WEXA) and serves on the UW Extension Board of Visitors. She is a member of the WCA Health and Human Services Steering Committee of which she chaired for many years.

“Alice and Colleen have been local leaders and statewide advocates for all those that county government serves,” said O’Connell. “Their passion, dedication and commitment to our state will be felt for generations to come and we are thrilled to present them with this award.”

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