Council remembers former City Manager Ted Staton

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Michigan Municipal League

Ted Staton

Former East Lansing City Manager Ted Staton, 63, died early Tuesday in Ohio after a fight with cancer. He retired as city manager of Upper Arlington, Ohio, on Jan. 31.

Staton was East Lansing’s city manager for nearly two decades, making him one of the longest tenured managers the city has ever seen. Staton was praised by many of his former colleagues for his leadership and how he guided the city during a time of growth.

At that night’s East Lansing City Council meeting, Mayor Mark Meadows said, “It’s an appropriate time, I think, for me to talk a little bit about working with Ted, which I consider to be a lucky thing. For me to have been on a city council, much like this one—high- energy, high-production city council—and having a city manager that worked so well with the council and accomplished so many things.”

Current East Lansing City Manager George Lahanas worked side by side with Staton for many years and had nothing but good things to say about Staton, who held the position for 16 years prior to Lahanas.

“During that time I probably worked for Ted 10 years as a direct report to him. I thought I wanted to let people know how regarded Ted was in this organization and also within the profession of city management,” said Lahanas. “After the news of Ted’s passing was sent around—the number of condolences, the number of well wishes for his family, the number of stories being related about his mentorship of people really was tremendous.”

Meadows said Staton was able “to bring the community back together” in times of need.

“Among the accomplishments during Ted’s tenure here: if you like the Hannah Community Center, that’s Ted Staton. Soccer Complex, if your grandkids or kids play soccer—Ted Staton. Softball—Ted Staton. Aquatic Center—Ted Staton,” said Meadows. “Doubling the size of our city with the objective of removing all of the burden of maintaining a city government from the householders in this city and the homeowners. To try to move it on to commercial enterprises and trying to ease that burden—Ted Staton.”

Visitation will be 3-7 p.m. Saturday at the Schoedinger Northwest Chapel, 1740 Zollinger Road in Upper Arlington, Ohio. Services will be at 2 p.m. Sunday at the Upper Arlington Municipal Building, 3600 Tremont Road.

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