Alderperson D.J. Sanders to step down Jan. 31

Ward 1 representative cites job promotion, new responsibilities as reason for resignation

Donald "D.J." Sanders Jr.

POLO — Alderperson Donald “D.J.” Sanders Jr. is stepping down as a representative of Polo’s Ward 1 at the end of January.

“It’s an honor to serve the citizens,” Sanders said after the Jan. 17 Polo City Council meeting. “It’s always been my position that I had no right to be here, the citizens gave me the right to be here. I was here to serve them.”

While he has enjoyed the past three years as a council member, Sanders said he doesn’t feel he’ll have the time to properly serve in that capacity because of new commitments associated with a job promotion.

“I view this position as something you almost have to treat it as a full-time job, even though it’s not,” he said. “You have to put in a lot of time outside of here [council meetings] and I don’t feel that I could do that and give the citizens their monies worth.”

During the Jan. 17 meeting, Mayor Doug Knapp thanked Sanders for his service.

“I know you and I haven’t seen eye-to-eye on certain things, but that’s what makes the process work,” Knapp told him. “I’d just like to say that we’re going to miss your passion that you’ve had, your commitment to the job and we thank you for serving. We’re going to miss you greatly.”

Sanders’ term was set to expire on May 1, 2023.

Alderperson Tommy Bardell is the other Ward 1 representative.

Also on Jan. 17, City Clerk Sydney Bartelt was recognized for earning the certified municipal clerk designation from the International Institute of Municipal Clerks.

“IIMC grants the CMC designation only to those Municipal Clerks who complete demanding educational requirements; and who have a record of significant contribution to their local government, their community and state,” IIMC President Sheri L. Pierce wrote in a Dec. 28 letter to Bartelt.

“In light of the speed and drastic nature of change these days, lifelong learning is not only desirable, it is necessary for all in local government to keep pace with growing demands and changing needs of the citizens we serve,” Pierce wrote. “We applaud your educational accomplishments and achievement of this milestone and congratulate you on your personal pursuit of professional excellence.”