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Township says farewell to treasurer Brian Kepes

By Dana Casadei

For over 30 years, Bloomfield Township Treasurer Brian Kepes has been an important asset to Bloomfield Township, and Monday, August 28, marked his last board of trustees meeting, with his retirement going into effect at 5:31 p.m. on Thursday, August 31.

Two well-deserved proclamations were read to honor Kepes at the meeting, one by Marcia Gershenson, vice chair of the board of commissioners for Oakland County, who played a large role in Kepes running for the first time in 1994; and the other by Bloomfield Township Clerk, Martin Brook. 

“This is one of my favorite things to do, to honor great people that have contributed so much to our community,” Oakland County Commissioner Gershenson said, also noting this one was a little sad too. “We’re definitely going to miss you.”

Gershenson’s sentiments were echoed multiple times throughout the evening, including by both Brook and trustee Neal Barnett. 

“I’ve known Brian a long time…it certainly saddens me that you’re leaving the board. You bring so much to the board and to the township,” Barnett said. “I can say, because of all your contributions, Bloomfield Township is certainly a much better place to live.”

Kepes then spoke, thanking every person who has been with him during his time working for the township, his family, and joked that he would do his best to get through his speech without using his tissues. 

“I am deeply and humbly filled with gratitude and emotions… know that I am honored and privileged to have been of service,” Kepes said. “It’s been a wonderful journey and adventure.”

And what an adventure it has been over the last 30 years of public service. 

Kepes' commitment to the township started after he was appointed to the board of review in 1994, a role he was reappointed to year after year through 2009, and a committee he then chaired. He was also appointed to the zoning board of appeals in 1994, a board he continued to participate in until 2008.

Kepes was first unanimously appointed to the board of trustees in March 2009. He was then elected to the board of trustees in November 2010, and then in November 2012. He is CPA by training, and runs a real estate and management company. Most recently, Kepes is well-known for his work as treasurer on the Bloomfield Township’s Board of Trustees, a role he’s held since 2016, and was reelected to in 2020.

Kepes came into office as treasurer during a period of financial turmoil in Bloomfield Township, following the Great Recession and investment concerns and questions about fees in 2014 following a $80 million bond issuance, and whether the township treasurer at the time and the then-investment advisory firm took the time to make sure township board members understood the nuances of the fees for the recommended investments.

Kepes was instrumental in the creation of an advisory township financial sustainability committee to work with investment firms.

Throughout it all Kepes kept the Kepes Commitment, part of his campaign when he ran in 2016, and a theme he kept throughout his years of public service, a card he’s kept on his desk during his tenure as treasurer. 

“I can assure you I worked hard, and I hope you’re proud,” Kepes said.Given the room’s standing ovation when he was done with his speech, it seemed everyone would agree that he had. 

As the meeting was about to close, Kepes’ successor as treasurer, trustee Michael Schostak, spoke about how much of a mentor Kepes had been to him over the last seven years and how he hopes he’ll be able to keep the Kepes Commitment during his time as treasurer. 

“I’ve learned whether it’s township stuff or other activities you’ve been involved in, when you get into something you come in with your full heart,” Schostak said.

Kepes later asked to adjourn the evening’s meeting, a fitting moment to end his 30 years of public service.


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