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Racine County Executive Jim Ladwig confirmed Tuesday he is resigning from his office to lead the Racine Area Manufacturers and Commerce effective January 1, 2015. He will not seek re-election in April.

The announcement was made by RAMAC chairman Rick Vojtisek, a story in The Journal Times reads.

“RAMAC is very pleased to announce Jim as our new president,” Vojtisek wrote in a statement released Tuesday. “He brings a great set of skills to the organization to lead RAMAC into the future and continue to serve our membership. RAMAC was fortunate to have Drew as our interim president and we thank him for his commitment as we welcome Jim and usher in a new era for the organization.”

Ladwig told Racine County Eye he never wanted to be a career politician and his goal was never to be an elected official.

“I enjoy the end result of getting things done,” he said. “This is a great opportunity be a voice for business and stay involved in public policy.”

He also said the team at the county is one of the best with whom he’s ever worked.

“This is bittersweet because we have a great time at the county,” Ladwig added. “We’ve gotten a lot done because we probably know how to do more with less than anywhere else in the state.”

Ladwig wrote in a letter to county employees that the decision to leave his post for RAMAC wasn’t an easy one, but the opportunity wasn’t one he felt he could pass up.

“As we all know, when opportunity knocks Racine Area tough choices must be made. Recently, I was offered the opportunity to become President of the Manufacturers and Commerce (RAMAC). After extensive discussions with my family and some serious soul searching, I have decided to accept their offer effective January 1, 2015,” he wrote.

The letter outlines accomplishments based on what Ladwig called “a pro-business approach,” and says that in his new role he looks forward to continue working to move Racine County forward.

“I truly believe Racine County is the best county in the State of Wisconsin; this wouldn’t be the case without your dedication and commitment. While I’m sad to be leaving so many friends, I’m excited that we will still be able to work together in my new capacity at RAMAC, as we move Racine County forward,” the letter reads.

Ladwig’s term expires in April 2015. He said County Board President Peter Hansen will take the reins for the remaining four months of Ladwig’s term.

Interested residents who want to run for county executive can take out nomination papers in December.


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