Ex-city manager says goodbye to Danvile

October 10, 2003

Dear Editor:

As the Biven family concludes its business in the City of Danville this week, we would be remiss if we did not publicly thank all of those citizens in the community who have supported us during our stay here. Upon interviewing for the position of city manager in December 1999, I told my wife that the elected officials here were a group of good, decent people whose primary concern was doing what was best for their town. We made the decision to move our family to Danville based on the reputation of those five individuals that were known to be people of great integrity, honesty, and character. I want to thank Alex Stevens, Jamey Gay, Tom Bryant, George Cunningham and the late Nancy Caudill for the opportunity that they gave me. It was a pleasure to serve them and to carry out their directives in moving this community forward. We leave very appreciative of the trust they placed in me.


It also was my pleasure to serve with a dedicated staff and talented employees who helped to form an excellent team. Their skills and performance went far beyond what is necessary as public employees. They seldom get the recognition that they deserve, yet day in and day out, 24 hours a day, they are providing services to this community. They do so while trying to be good stewards of the people's money and by being attentive to the needs of all. It was a privilege to serve with them.

You hear a lot about the "Heart of Danville". Their efforts have been impressive in bringing recognition to the downtown. But, it's the "soul of Danville" that we are most impressed with: Those citizens who care about their city, demand excellence, and set high standards. It is a team of local organizations, public and private, along with an excellent county government that does so many things to leave a lasting imprint on the town. The downtown presence of Centre College, Ephraim McDowell Regional Medical Center and Constitution Square State Park represent an unprecedented triple crown that is the envy of cities all over the country. What others would give to have only one of the three!

There will be a lot to miss. We'll miss the quaintness of a small town that allowed our daughters to treat City Hall in much the same way as Opie Taylor treated the Mayberry courthouse. We'll miss the excellent school teachers that they had, the trips to places like Williamsburg, Va., their lighting of the town Christmas tree, their involvement in parades and their participation in the arts. It was a great place to raise a family.

We'll miss "great" neighbors and SS. Peter & Paul Church, along with the friendship they offered. We'll miss patronizing local businesses, such as the furniture stores, local restaurants, Title Wave Video, and of course those desserts at the bowling alley. The friendly service of a small town was something special. We'll also miss the prime time attractions that provided great recognition to the community and excitement for our family such as the Vice Presidential Debate, football state championships, music videos filmed in town, and performances at the Norton Center, such as "Ol' Man River" and Smokey Robinson.

Even though we have been involved for the last several months with new jobs and a new school, we have looked forward to returning on weekends to be among friends and enjoy one of the best small towns in America. We will undoubtedly brag about Danville for quite some time and be strong ambassadors for the "City of Firsts." We are proud to have once been able to say (and sing) with so many of you, that this was "My Town." It certainly was quite an experience that we will never forget.

Thanks again to all of you that made this such a positive experience for me and my family, the concern that you showed us, the support you gave us, and the encouragement. We wish you continued success in the future.

Steve, Marietta,

Megan and Morgan Biven

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