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Honoring Bowling Green Mayor Wes Hoffman On His Retirement

Rep. Marcy Kaptur

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Mr. Speaker, I rise today to honor an exceptional elder statesman in my district. Bowling Green Mayor Wes Hoffman retires from public office at the end of this year. A native of Philadelphia, Mayor Hoffman served first his country and then his community.

Wes' pursuit of a college degree at the University of Pennsylvania's Wharton School was interrupted by World War II, when he enlisted in the Army Air Corps in 1943. After his heroic service in the war ended, Wes decided to pursue a career with the Army Air Corps, retiring from the United States Air Force as a Lieutenant Colonel in 1969. Throughout his military service, both during World War II and as a career officer, Wes served our nation with honor and distinction, earning the Distinguished Flying Cross with Oak Leaf Cluster, the Asiatic Pacific Campaign Medal with five Battle Stars, the Air Medal and Air Force Commendation Medal both with Oak Leaf Cluster.

After retiring from the Air Force, Wes decided to pursue additional higher education at Bowling Green State University, where he obtained a Masters Degree in 1971. In 1972, he began his public service with the City of Bowling Green as the Safety Service Director and later, in 1974, as the city's first Municipal Administrator. He retired in 1988. His retirement was short-lived, however, as he was approached by local leaders and urged to run for Mayor in 1991. He was elected in 1992, re-elected in 1995, and now retires from official business. Of his tenure, Mayor Hoffman noted, ``It has indeed been a privilege for me to have been a part of the deliberations and decision-making processes that have contributed to civic betterment and community well-being.'' Truly, the city of Bowling Green has grown, prospered and flourished under Wes' tutelage.

Visionary, patriotic, mindful of the needs of others, Wes Hoffman is a true community leader. His good deeds have not gone unnoticed, and he has been honored with awards and recognitions too numerous to mention from local, state, and national organizations. He is also a proud member of several veterans organizations, civic groups, educational and humanitarian organizations, and government consortiums. I know that even though Wes is retiring from ``active'' public life, he will remain very much in the thick of life in Bowling Green and Northwest Ohio. We wish him an enjoyable retirement, spent with family and friends, and doing all those things he put off until tomorrow. For people in our community, Wes Hoffman embodies the finest tradition of service before self that lies at the heart of America's nationhood.