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Friends and colleagues bid a fond farewell to departing town administrator

A group of Tilton selectmen, town officials and local committee members, both past and present, who were on hand during a retirement party for Town Administrator Joyce Fulweiler joined together for a photo at Island Park last week. (Photo by Donna Rhodes) (click for larger version)
September 12, 2018
TILTON Joyce Fulweiler began her time as the Town Administrator for the Town of Tilton in August of 2007, and as she heads toward a well-deserved retirement on Oct. 31 this year, friends and colleagues gathered at Island Park last Thursday evening to celebrate her career and impact on the community.

After everyone enjoyed a cookout and live music provided by Kent Finemore, a longtime friend of Fulweiler's, accolades for the hardworking administrator were delivered by friends, co-workers and associates on both sides of the river.

"Joyce Fulweiler is a queen as far as I'm concerned. I love you, Joyce," said Selectman Joe Jesseman.

Pat Consentino shared her praise for the administrator she has worked beside for a decade as well.

"She's been a very special lady to me; an amazing mentor. Joyce has been our backbone. The light at the end of the tunnel," Consentino said. "On behalf of [the board], we are going to miss her terribly."

Selectman Katherine Dawson, the longest standing member of the board, said Fulweiler came to the town during turbulent times back in 2007 but managed to maintain a positive attitude and kept the town moving forward.

"She came on with compassion and got us all on the straight and narrow, and we never even noticed," said Dawson.

Besides her many duties for the town, Fulweiler, who lives in Northfield, was also a huge supporter of the Winnipesauke River Trail that runs through Tilton, Northfield and Franklin, and Jon Scanlon, the current chair of the Tilton Board of Selectmen, also heaped praise on her for those efforts as well.

"She brought a cheerful face to all who came in, but one of the dearest things to my heart here is the river and the trail, and Joyce was very instrumental in that," he said.

Rick Silverstone of the Winnipesauke River Trail Association said he couldn't let Fulweiler get away without a thank you and Ken Norton, who worked to keep the river available to kayakers and other whitewater enthusiasts, also took a moment at the microphone to thank her.

"Some think the river separates the two towns (Northfield and Tilton)," said Norton. "I worked with her in both towns and she was an amazing force of positivity, moving things forward even in the face of negativity some times, and I thank her for that."

Others who stepped up to praise her were former selectmen, commissioners and committee members, and friends from both sides of the Winnipesauke River.

Kathi Mitchell of the Tilton Conservation Commission had some fun with a special presentation for Fulweiler though, handing her items she could enjoy during retirement. Among them were mints to remind her she is "worth a mint" to the community, marbles to replace the ones she might have lost in the course of her job, and toothpicks so she can now "pick and choose" what she does during the day.

Finally, Tilton Police Chief Robert Cormier took a moment to thank her as well.

"Joyce and I came in together (as town employees) and to have had Joyce on Speed Dial has been a blessing," he said.

He then presented her with a Certificate of Appreciation and a plaque from Tilton Police Department, complete with an official TPD shoulder patch, expressing their gratitude for all she has done over the past 11 years.

At the end of the night though, the one person who was actually looking forward to her upcoming retirement was her husband Tom Fulweiler.

"I'm looking forward to finally spending more time with her," he said with a smile.

Martin Lord Osman
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