Former Kalamazoo City Commissioner Shannon Sykes-Nehring attended her last Commission meeting as a member of the board last night. She resigned because she no longer lives in the city, but Sykes-Nehring says she’ll remain active in the community.
“I’m still going to be out loud and outspoken and doing work in this community and sometimes driving this guy crazy and a lot of folks up here. It’s not going to be that easy to get rid of me, but I just won’t be doing it up from that seat. So, thank you again, I appreciate the opportunity and I wish everybody well,” she said.
Sykes-Nehring criticized the city’s handling of a camp of homeless people in Bronson Park last year. She was arrested – but not charged – after refusing to leave when Public Safety officers shut the camp down.
Commissioner Jack Urban says Sykes-Nehring was an inspiration.
“You act on what you believe in. It took a long while for me to even begin to do that. I had similar thoughts from a different perspective, but I didn’t act on them. And you, with all your children and everything else that’s going on with you, you find the time to do this stuff and to stick with it. So what’s my excuse?”
The Kalamazoo City Commission will accept applications from people interested in serving out the rest of Sykes-Nehring’s term until May 30th. They plan to pick her replacement by June 10th. The seat will be up for election in November.