Rubello named to fill vacant City Council seat

By: Kristyne E. Demske | St. Clair Shores Sentinel | Published August 21, 2020

 Dave Rubello

Dave Rubello

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ST. CLAIR SHORES — Saying that he has remained involved with the city and that experience is needed to make upcoming big decisions in St. Clair Shores, City Council voted 5-1 to appoint former City Councilman Dave Rubello to fill the late Councilman Peter Rubino’s remaining term of office.

Mayor Kip Walby said making the selection Aug. 17 was “bittersweet.” Rubino died April 27, leaving a vacant seat on City Council until his term was set to expire in November 2021.

Sixteen residents applied for the position, filling out extensive applications and giving presentations to City Council at a special Saturday meeting in July. The applicants were also interviewed independently by the members of City Council before a decision was made.

“There were many, many qualified candidates,” Walby said. “It’s a difficult choice to choose one individual from the sixteen qualified candidates that we got.”

Councilman John Caron nominated Rubello for the position.

“We have a lot of major decisions that are coming up,” he said. “Experience becomes very important.”

Rubello served on council from 2007 to 2011. The account representative for C & G Newspapers is the chair of the St. Clair Shores Activities Committee, is a member of the St. Clair Shores Waterfront Environmental Committee, Memorial Day Parade Committee, Aqua Fest Committee, Optimist Club and Lac Ste. Clair Kiwanis Club, among other affiliations.

Councilman Chris Vitale said that he was voting for Rubello “because I feel like, in a way, Dave hasn’t left the council. Dave would always send me a text message, ‘Hey Chris, did you see what’s going on on this street? Have you seen this dumpster? It looks awful.’ He’s remained involved in the city.”

Rubello said he feels honored to fill Rubino’s remaining 15-months in office.

“I hope I do his family and his memory right,” he said.

He said that he’s stayed active in the community and feels qualified to return as a council member, where he hopes to be a voice for the city and its residents.

“I put my heart and soul into it, and I always have. I stayed in touch and I stayed involved,” he said.

Councilwoman Candice Rusie was the dissenting vote against Rubello’s appointment. She said she enjoyed speaking with the 16 candidates vying for the position.

“We have so many people with different professional backgrounds, educational backgrounds. It was nice to see how many people wanted to step up to serve St. Clair Shores,” she said.

Council members encouraged the remaining 15 candidates not to give up their desire to serve the city.

“I’m going to ask you to get on a committee, volunteer, let’s see you in the park,” Councilman Ron Frederick said. “Next time around, get on that ballot. Don’t give it up just because the first time it didn’t work out for you — many of us up here ran a few times before we got in.”

Councilman Peter Accica agreed.

“It was a very tough decision. You can run again in a year, so don’t give up,” he said.

Rubello will be sworn in as a member of City Council Sept. 8.

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