I am skeptical of how the city of Norwalk spends my tax dollars. I have no tolerance for senseless waste and civic quagmires. But before you think “Oh Lord, here he goes,” I am actually writing to complement Norwalk. Specifically, a leader of Norwalk.
A few years ago, while jogging past the Norwalk Health Department I asked myself, “I wonder what the ‘H’ goes on in that place? It’s nice, rather large and casts an impressive presence along East Avenue but I never really hear or read about it.” I thought maybe because, knock on telephone pole, I am generally healthy so I have not had to stop for a visit. Fast forward a few months and I started working alongside the volunteers of the Norwalk Bike Walk Task Force. When I heard the meetings were at the Health Department I thought finally….. I’ll see what goes on in there.
During the first meeting I was introduced to Tim Callahan, the Director of the Health Department. First he had to explain he is not related to my wife, a different Callahan. I got to know Tim as he helped us navigate the many ins and outs of town processes. As an advisor to the Task Force, he took time out after work to guide us with helpful insights, input and of course, always with a great attitude. Along the course of 2+ years to now, he’d also fill me in on all the Health Department does. Restaurant and food service inspections, yes even food trucks and the school kitchens. Health education and various screenings. Clinical services. Pleasant stuff like septic tank inspections, disease investigation, bioterrorism preparedness, even tick testing. Oh, and let’s not forget monitoring and testing all the water we drink. Very impressive!
Last week, Tim retired after 25 years of service. Like the other critical services such as Police and Fire, Tim and his staff operate behind the scenes big time. But perhaps no other entity tangibly impacts our lives every moment of every day – think about it: eating, drinking water, and the surrounding aura of all-things-health. Pretty amazing, right? Enjoy your retirement Tim and above all else, a huge thanks for leaving Norwalk with a “clean bill of health.”