In 1986, Watonwan County elected Don Kuhlman to be their County Auditor. Ever since then, every four years they have continued to do the same thing.

On Dec. 29 Kuhlman was recognized for his many years of dedicated service to Watonwan County as they held “Don Kuhlman Day” at the Watonwan County Courthouse.

The County Auditor/ Treasurer position is an elected position which carries a four-year term. Kuhlman says that being an elected official meant that he was always accountable to the people who could vote him into office or out of office. “It holds people accountable,” Kuhlman said although he says he wouldn’t have done anything differently even if he wasn’t an elected official. Kuhlman says the most important thing to in the position was to “Always tell the truth and be straightforward.”

Some of the biggest accomplishments that Kuhlman had with the help of many people included rebuilding the new Watonwan County Services Office something that was desperately needed at the time. Another important thing that was done was revamping the Watonwan County Jail turning it into a 72-hour hold facility into a 90-day lockup something that Kuhlman says saves the county money.

And of course, there was the building of the new Watonwan County Library something that Kuhlman says what a collaborative effort between the county St. James and the Friends of the Library. Aside from the major infrastructure projects that were completed some of the other things that are different than when he first started are mainly the digital advancements that have been made. One of the biggest technology advancements Kuhlman says has to do with voting and being able to get information about voter registration much quicker than when he first started.

For the full story pick up your print edition of the January 5th, Plaindealer.