Jim Thorpe Junior Councilman Receives Praise – Times News Online

Published June 12, 2021 9:00 AM

Connor Rodgers had a seat at the main table, but his role as Jim Thorpe Borough’s first junior councilman for the past two and a half years went beyond sitting next to elected decision-makers.

He participated actively in district discussions, led efforts to clean up tires dumped on the slopes of Flagstaff Mountain, and volunteered regularly at Jim Thorpe’s biannual recycling events.

On Thursday, the night before Rodgers graduated from Jim Thorpe Area High School, he received praise from both county and state officials as he attended his final council meeting in that capacity.

“He was a real councilor,” said Council President Greg Strubinger of Rodgers, who will attend Grove City College in western Pennsylvania this fall to study political science.

“I had the pleasure of teaching him in high school, and we’d talk a lot about things in the district while we were in school. He was a member of our Master’s Site Plan Committee for Memorial Park and developed our first city tour. Connor is simply one of the most thorough people you meet in everything he does. “

Before Rodgers was named Junior Councilman, he attended meetings with neighbor Bill Malatak, whom he called his mentor.

“I didn’t always agree with him, but I probably wouldn’t be up here without him,” Rodgers said.

Rodgers, along with his father Vince and a few classmates from Jim Thorpe Area High School, took on the job of collecting tires that were thrown on the slope of Flagstaff Mountain. Strubinger said Rodgers collected over 500 tires.

“It runs in his family, but you can really see that the environment is important to him and what we will pass on to the next generation,” said Mayor Michael Sofranko. “He’s here every time we have a recycling program. His commitment is to be admired. “

Rodgers, who sat at the council table, said he had gained a new appreciation for the men and women who serve on governing bodies.

“I can understand why very few people are running for the council,” he said.

“It takes a lot of commitment, passion and perseverance. You will never please everyone. It’s easy to see the passion this council has for the city. I don’t always agree with their decisions, but I can see that they always make their decisions in the best interests of the district. “

Rodgers received a district honorary resolution on Thursday, as well as proclamations from the state house of representatives and state senate.

Connor Rodgers, center, holds a proclamation received Thursday night during his last meeting as Jim Thorpe Borough’s first junior councilman. Rodgers will attend Grove City College in western Pennsylvania this fall to study political science. Pictured, from left, are Jim Thorpe Mayor Michael Sofranko, Jim Thorpe Council President Greg Strubinger, Rodgers, Brad Hurley (Representative of the Office of Senator John Yudichak) and Timm Berger (Representative of the Office of State Rep. Doyle Heffley). JARRAD HEDES / TIMES NEWS

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