Erik Dolan is the newest member of the Oxford Village Council.
He was appointed in a 4-0 vote on April 12 and sworn in two days later by township Clerk Curtis Wright. The appointment expires in November.
“I’m very thrilled,” he said.
Dolan, who lives in the Oxford Lakes subdivision, has been an officer with the Oak Park Public Safety Department since 1996. He’s cross-trained to do police work, firefighting and emergency medical care.
“I am dedicated to public service,” he said during his April 11 interview. “It’s not about me, it is about doing the right thing.”
He has the potential to retire in September and with his daughter in college, Dolan is a self-professed “empty-nester.”
Dolan told council he has “nothing but time to devote” to finding solutions to the problems facing this community.
He’s lived in the village for 5½ years and before that, he resided in the township for about 10 years.
Prior to being hired by Oak Park, he spent five years serving in the U.S. Army military police and was deployed to Somalia, Haiti and Cuba’s Guantanamo Bay.
“I have worked with all sorts of individuals,” said Dolan, who grew up in Milford. “I have worked with other law enforcement (officers) from other countries (and) indigent individuals from Third World nations. I have worked with officers who were superior in grade.”
Dolan noted he “achieved the rank of sergeant . . . in one of the quickest periods of time that anyone in my unit had.”
“I’m very proud of that,” he said. “I love my military service.”
He doesn’t view his new council seat as a stepping stone to something else.
“For me, this is where I want to be,” Dolan told council. “Personally, I’m looking to devote myself to Oxford . . . I’m not using this to put on my CV (curriculum vitae) . . . This is where I look to devote all my energies.”
A total of four candidates applied for the council seat vacated when Bryan Cloutier resigned. The others were Dr. Theordore Walton, a retired optometrist; Susan Oles, a downtown business owner: and Kathleen Logan, a regional coordinator for the Michigan Veterans Affairs Agency.
“I just want to say that everyone that applied for the council was amazing,” said Councilman Tom Kennis. “It was a very difficult decision.”
Councilwoman Maureen Helmuth agreed.
“We had awesome applicants,” she said. “We had a great pool of people to pick from.”
It was noted that just because these three applicants weren’t selected for council doesn’t mean there aren’t other opportunities for them and others to serve in village government.
Right now, there are two vacancies on the planning commission.
In the Nov. 8 general election, three council seats will be up for election, two with four-year terms (currently occupied by Kennis and Rose Bejma) and one with a two-year term.
The deadline to file is Tuesday, July 26.