On March 3, 2023, Kenosha County Executive Samantha Kerkman appointed me to serve on the Local Emergency Planning Committee. I am grateful that she had such confidence in me, and I consider the committee a critical one to our community.
Recently, however, I’ve been asked the same questions by friends, readers, supporters, and community leaders. They were concerned I would lose my ability to be an independent journalist, and to hold our local government accountable in the way I have always done. I gave these concerns some serious thought, and concluded that I could still produce unbiased work for the Kenosha County Eye while serving on the committee. However, there would be other unavoidable difficulties if I served on a county committee.
I have successfully sued the Kenosha County Sheriff’s Department in the past, and unfortunately, I have recently had to do so again. As this case remains in litigation, I can’t sit on a county committee when I am alleging wrongdoing on the part of that same county. This is a conflict that cannot be deliberately overlooked.
Some in the community expressed opposition to my appointment, as well. It’s been confirmed, however that twice as many people supported my nomination, than those who were against it. The majority of the County Board signaled their support for me, as well. To both those on the County Board and my other supporters, I’d like to say thank you.
While I feel humbled and grateful by the outpouring of support I’ve received, I must remain true to my readers and advertisers. They deserve assurance that I will not be swayed from keeping government accountable. Therefore, tonight I rescinded my name from consideration to County Executive Kerkman.
Kevin E. Mathewson