“What’s not to like about the land of high altitude and low multitude? Small town living, open spaces, a clean environment and outdoor recreation are all things about this community that my family cherishes,” said Ken Markert.
Markert grew up outside of Buffalo, N.Y. He, his wife Lynn and their 18-month-old daughter Laurel moved to Cody in 1996 to begin working as the Park County planner. Son Neil was born in 2002. In 2004, Markert started the consulting firm MMI Planning.
Markert’s service to the community includes the School District’s Resource Complaint Committee, the Cody City Planning Commission and professional boards related to city planning. Since 1997 he has been a member of the Cody Rotary Club. He’s the only active member to have held all the club offices: president, treasurer, secretary, board director and show director.
Says fellow Rotarian Howard Thompson, “Ken has been very active in Rotary. He is a lovely guy, with a great sense of humor who always does what he says he’ll do and then does more.”
In 2011, Markert was elected to the Park County Animal Shelter Board and currently serves as president. He is leading the shelter’s seven-year capital campaign to improve the current facilities and better address the shelter’s growing needs.
“There is a huge demand for the shelter from people who find animals or have to give up their animals,” Markert said. “95 percent of all the shelter animals find a new home. It’s not just about the animals. It’s about the people connected to the animals. We’re the only animal shelter that serves Park County and Cody except for Powell, that has a shelter within city limits.”
The new shelter will open in late 2020.
Lelani Snyder, Steering Committee member on the capital campaign, said, “Ken’s solely responsible for getting a reconciliation to the land acquisition. As a forward thinker, he’s excellent at presenting the problems and solutions of the shelter to the community. Cody and the shelter are fortunate to have him”.
What inspires Markert?
“Cody’s can-do attitude, a belief that working together makes the community an even better place,” Markert said. “ One time when I was particularly tired of community service, I opened a fortune cookie that said, ‘Every burden is a blessing.’ That settled it.
“The achievements that might be attributed to me are the accomplishments of the teams on which I have served. The 1998 County Land Use Plan, the 2000 County Zoning Regulations, planning for the new Law Enforcement Center, the 50th Rotary Show, the revival of the Park County Animal Shelter and construction of a new animal shelter.”
He feels a sense of obligation to the community and the state that are so good to him and his family.
To donate or learn more about the Park County Animal Shelter, go to parkcountyanimalshelter.org.