Winkler names Director of Community Services

Jody Penner has been named the new Director of Community Services for the City of Winkler. (GREG VANDERMEULEN/Winkler Times)

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The City of Winkler officially welcomed their new Director of Community Services for the City of Winkler at their Feb. 12 council meeting.
Jody Penner will take over the reins from Deb Penner, and brings years of experience in management roles with Friesens Corporation, including overall general management of the Packaging Division.
“He and his family have always made Winkler their home and have a passion to give back to the community,” a City of Winkler press release stated. “Jody has been involved in the community volunteering in various capacities including coaching sports, church leadership and other community organizations including The Bunker.”
Jody Penner said he’s excited about his new role which will begin March 11.
“I see the city of Winkler as a strong community, a growing community that’s done a lot of good work to build a foundation in a lot of different areas,” he said. “I look forward to coming on board and using some of the skills I’ve learned over a good number of years in business to be able to apply that here to the city.”
Penner said there is work to do with the Meridian Exhibition Centre currently under construction and a position yet to fill.
“We’re looking at hiring an events coordinator with Deb Penner’s departure,” he said. “That’s going to be a key role to fill.”
He’s also looking toward the future.
“I want to look a little bit at what the needs of the community are going to be in the years to come and how we can meet those,” he said.
For Penner, being able to work for the community is a challenge he embraces. “I’ve always tried to serve in different areas, when my kids have been involved in different things, whether it was sports or serving on advisory council and different things like that,” he said.
That chance to serve the community using the skills he’s learned in business is something Penner is excited about.
He added he’s impressed by what the city has already done.
“You look at things like the Bethel Heritage Park… and I think that was a really good move on the part of the city and sometimes, not everybody is going to see things the same way, but that’s something I see that really adds to the community.”
“The Winkler Arts and Culture Centre, the concert hall, those are all things that I see as part of the foundation that we now have that’s strong and that we can build on,” he added.