Silver Creek Twp. Clerk presents Sister Lakes Fire Chief with national Top 100 certificate

Published 8:00 am Friday, February 11, 2022

SILVER CREEK TWP. — A regular government meeting turned into a full-circle moment for two local officials on Wednesday.

After nominating Sister Lakes Volunteer Fire Department Chief Anthony Lozada for the Civic Plus 2021 Small Town America Civic Volunteer Award last year, Silver Creek Township Clerk Lori Behnke presented Lozada the a with the certificate honoring him as a top 100 finalist out of more than 700 nominees for the national honor.

“Thank you so much for all you do for our community,” Behnke said, as she handed the certificate to Lozada. “You do a great job. … You just volunteer so much of your time and effort.”

The annual Small Town America Civic Volunteer Award is given to extraordinary public service volunteers in towns with populations less than 25,000. The eventual first-place winner of the award will be given $20,000, with $10,000 going to the first runner-up and $5,000 to the second runner-up.

In her nomination, Behnke praised Lozada’s dedication to not only his fire chief duties, but the time he donates to running local safety programs and other community activities. At the fire department, Lozada has worked to improve response times, written and received a grant for updated personal protective equipment and air packs for all members of the fire department, and spearheaded the efforts to add a second fire station in Sister Lakes – which is expected to be operational in 2022.

“Anthony clearly loves his community – all of his community, not just his own department,” Behnke wrote in her nomination. “Anthony is a positive, driven leader in our community. He is a true professional in this demanding volunteer position.”

When he heard he made the Top 100, Lozada said he does not do what does for any recognition. 

“Anything for the community,” Lozada said. “That’s kind of where my heart is at.”

Lozada, who also serves as Cass County’s dispatch supervisor, previously told Leader Publications that his fire department crew deserves credit for any success they’ve had.

“I look at it as the fire department does well because of the membership it has,” he said. “Those guys are the driving force behind that place. They are the ones who make that place look good. I steer the ship, but I give them all the credit. I’ve got the best guys in the business as far as I’m concerned.”

In other business, the board:

  • Approved a resolution to allow local residents to protest in writing to the Board of Review.
  • Approved a resolution to establish an Absent Voter Counting board for the 2022 election. 
  • Approved a resolution to adopt the 2022 Poverty Exemption Guidelines.
  • Approved a motion to purchase two fire file cabinets for $1,910 each.
  • Approved an $85 phone stipend for the building inspector.