A Singer well worth celebrating

Catalyst winner has given his all for Fort Dodge, the region, and a four-lane US Highway 20

Two of the people who make Fort Dodge a great place to live were honored by the Greater Fort Dodge Growth Alliance Thursday evening.

Bob Singer, the former Webster County supervisor who was also the first vice president of the U.S. 20 Corridor Association, received the Catalyst Award.

Singer has a long track record of community service. He was on the Fort Dodge Community School District Board of Education from 1983 to 1986. He was one of the longest-serving members of the Fort Dodge Plan and Zoning Commission, a panel that he was on from 1980 to 2008.

For about 16 years, he helped lead the effort to get U.S. Highway 20 widened to four lanes all across the state.

And he was a county supervisor from 2008 to 2016.

Singer has freely immersed himself in countless projects for the good of the community, and brought his unique blend of wit and wisdom to each one.

The community owes a debt of gratitude to Singer for all his labors over the decades. We know he doesn’t like a lot of fuss, so we’re going to make this short and sweet by merely saying: Thanks, Bob.

Steve Mattke was named the Alliance’s Volunteer of the Year. Mattke is the city electrician, charged with maintaining things like traffic signals and street lights. He can often be spotted high above the street in the bucket of his boom truck, working on some electrical device.

But he also goes above and beyond the call of duty to make sure things go smoothly at community events like Market on Central and Holiday on Central.

We salute Mattke for his work as city electrician and as a Growth Alliance volunteer.

Mattke and Singer were honored before another record crowd that filled the main ballroom of the Best Western Starlite Village Inn & Suites.

The annual dinner was held at a time when the Fort Dodge community and the region are experiencing healthy growth. The latest sign of that growth is the debut of the Prestage Foods of Iowa pork plant near Eagle Grove.

And at the end of last year, the Growth Alliance was working with 16 economic development prospects that collectively represent $1.2 billion worth of potential investment.

The growth is paying off for area workers, literally. Between 2008 and 2018, local wages have increased by 24.5 percent, according to Growth Alliance statistics.

These developments, along with the service of Mattke and Singer, are well worth celebrating.