Shawn Keenan: Worthy of Recognition

Posted by – Steve Cohen, Director of Community Development

When people talk about Water Resources Coordinator Shawn Keenan you often hear him described with the words: integrity, smart, dependable, and friend.

Shawn Keenan

Shawn Keenan

That’s why it was wonderful to see him honored this past Monday by City Manager Pete Auger and the City Council as a finalist for the 2013 Auburn Hills’ Employee of the Year.  Although he did not win the award (that will be announced by Pete soon), he’s very worthy of recognition.  Shawn was the Community Development Department’s unanimous nomination for the award.

As a little background, Shawn has been a true Champion in promoting water quality and his work has given Auburn Hills a reputation as a leader in Michigan.  He serves on numerous professional boards, most notably with the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality, in which he’s considered an expert in his field.  The State of Michigan loves Shawn so much that they call him first when they have extra trout to distribute, which benefits Auburn Hills and the Clinton River greatly.

Shawn has worked with City staff and various groups to help create numerous memorable Auburn Hills’ events such as the Fishing Derby, Clinton River Water Festival, Paddlepalooza, and the BBQ Cook-off at Summerfest.

What’s really cool about Shawn is that he’s always trying to improve himself.  Two years ago, he decided that he wanted to take his skills to the next level.  After months and months of study and self-improvement, Shawn became a professional city planner by obtaining his national certification.

The Planning Commission celebrating Shawn Keenan obtaining national planner certification

The Planning Commission celebrating Shawn Keenan obtaining national planner certification

In his nomination, one of his colleagues wrote … “From the day I met Shawn Keenan, he has been one of my very favorite co-workers.  He’s smart, cheerful, calm, professional, funny, easy to talk to, and is always willing to lend a hand.   I can bounce ideas around with him and he always adds value to the things we work on.  He’s an amazing team-player and always offers relevant advice or ideas.  He’s also an incredible barbecue chef!   Every team needs a Shawn!”

Yes, every team “needs a Shawn.”  I feel lucky to have him on our team.  I’m not the only one, we all feel that way.  Congrats Shawn!