GREENVILLE — After 14 years with the Greenville Department of Public Services (DPS), Tom Pollock left to take over the department of public works in Lake Odessa … but he never really left.
Pollack continued to live in Greenville, just minutes away from the DPS garage, and, in a way, he was waiting for a chance to come back.
That time is now, as Pollack was hired this week as director of the Greenville department
“The idea of coming home, it’s really nice,” Pollock said.
But even with management possibilities coming available while in Greenville, Pollock said he didn’t feel he was quite ready. He needed more experience.
“When I left Greenville, I had started a progression to get more responsibilities. Eventually, I wanted to move into management. That’s when I found the director position at Lake Odessa,” he said.
And for eight years he loved it in the small village on the southern end of Ionia County.
“In the eight years I was down in Lake Odessa, I was welcomed with open arms by the community,” he said.
But then came the chance to come back to Greenville.
“I kind of felt like I owed the Greenville community,” Pollack said. “I owed it to them to continue to get better in my field and, yes, come back.”
Wading through several applicants, interviews and meet-and-greets, City Manager George Bosanic said the decision to hire Pollack became more and more clear.
“Throughout the process, Tom kept rising to the top,” Bosanic said.
A lifetime resident of Greenville, working with DPS for 14 years from 1991 to 2005 and 22 years at Electrolux prior to that, Pollock said it was a bit unusual going through the interview process with people he had spent more than a decade working alongside.
“It just seemed weird to interview in front of people who not only know you personally, but know how you worked when you were employed with them,” he joked.
But in all seriousness, he said, he had to show he had what it took to manage, something he himself admitted he did not possess his first go-round with Greenville.
Bosanic said Pollock’s development was apparent.
“I feel comfortable and confident that Tom has developed to the point that he will be a very capable and successful director of public services,” he said.
Pollock said he hopes to continue developing, not only himself, but the department as a whole.
“In most anything, status quo isn’t where anyone wants to stay. There’s a level of service in Greenville that’s always been top notch,” he said. “Let’s see if we can raise the bar.
“My goal is to bring purpose and passion to the community and hope it is contagious.”