New administrator on job with village council

Graham Jaehnig/Daily Mining Gazette Calumet Village’s new Village Administrator, Caleb Katz, an attorney from central Illinois, was sworn into his new position at the June 18 regular council meeting.

CALUMET — The village has a new administrator. Illinois native Caleb Katz was sworn in at the regular June meeting last Tuesday, replacing Joe Snow, who retired this spring.

Katz said he is enjoying the job as he becomes acclimated to new tasks and duties that are far different from his former law practice in Illinois.

“I’ve been able to meet a lot of people and business owners, and such, which I definitely enjoy doing,” he said. “I enjoy hearing their issues problems they need help with.”

Katz said he has an open-door policy, by which he can be available to do whatever is within his capacity to help residents with anything with which they need help.

Katz has a bachelors degree in history in Ohio, then earned his law degree in Milwaukee at Marquette. In the past three years, he said, he was maintaining a private practice, primarily in insurance defense and segregation work. He said that becoming a licensed attorney in Michigan is still on the table. He said a frequent question he hears is why an attorney from Illinois would give up his practice to become an administrator in what may be the smallest village in the U.P.

“I love the U.P., honestly,” he said. “My family has a small place here. I love the pace, the people, just kind of how things are done up here.”

He said he enjoyes meeting people as individuals on a personal level, something he was unable to do as an attorney.

“I like meeting people and talking with them, I like working with them individually,” he explained, “whereas before I was working with larger insurance companies, basically with the clients, and you don’t normally get that personal interaction. Up here, you meet people, talk with them, kind of hang out with them, and become friends, and get that close relationship with them. You come to understand how the village works, and you feel like you’re a part of something.”

Katz has visions for the village’s future, one of which, he said, is development.

“I see a lot of vacant buildings,” he said. “I think if we can get in touch with the right people, and also get people to come in and see the hidden beauty of the village, I think it would help us out a lot.”

Katz said he impressed with the several groups and organizations whose members are working diligently on obtaining grants and searching for additional funds to revitalize Calumet.