Susan Caljean was South Orange Village Clerk for only two years, but she made a big difference in the administration of the town, according to those in the know.
At Caljean’s last Board of Trustees meeting on March 14, South Orange Trustees and Village administrative staff said heartfelt farewells to Caljean who is moving to Florida to pursue a new career.
Caljean’s warmth was cited by many, but her professional skills also rated raves. Trustee Walter Clarke noted that Caljean “got the office in order” in her two years as clerk.
“Florida’s gain is unfortunately our loss,” Trustee Walter Clarke told Caljean. “You’ve been incredibly personable but also professional. We will miss you.”
Both Village President Sheena Collum and Trustee Mark Rosner said that Caljean had excelled at one of “the toughest jobs in town.” Village Counsel Steve Rother thanked Caljean for making the town “lawyer’s job a lot easier.”
Trustee Deborah Davis Ford took some credit for hiring Caljean. “I’m proud I chose you!” laughed Davis Ford, who wished Caljean warm days and an improved golf game. “I want to thank you for your service on behalf of residents and this Board. You became our family in serving the community,” said Davis Ford.
Village Administrator Barry Lewis said that Caljean was the right person and the right fit for South Orange at the right time, calling her “an absolute pleasure to work with.”
Trustee Steve Schnall noted Caljean’s wisdom, warmth and good humor.
The cascade of personal remarks and compliments clearly moved Caljean, who could be heard softly sniffling throughout the comments and said that town staff could call anytime with questions.
Village Assistant Administrator Adam Loehner comforted Caljean: After telling her, “We’re going to miss your laugh,” he added, “We’ll use the excuse to visit Florida in winter!”
As South Orange undertakes the difficult task of searching for a replacement for Caljean, Deputy Clerk Shinell Smith step in to fill the void.
Said Collum, “The Board has full confidence in Shinell Smith taking on the role and acting as clerk.”
The Board will vote on appointing Smith as Acting Clerk its March 28 meeting. See the resolution below.
See the full meeting agenda here.