Recently our community lost a very silent contributor to our better good. Mr. Brad Gerard Robinson died on Dec. 8, 2021, and we recently put him to rest.
Brad served as a Town of Westport Board Supervisor for 19 years retiring from that job in 2016. Brad oversaw lots of changes at the Town, but always had the best interests of the residents, taxpayers, and Town employees at heart. He oversaw and supported many trail improvements in the Town, and several joint conservation and park/trail projects with the Village of Waunakee, City of Middleton, Dane County Parks, and the DNR. It is really hard to calculate how many miles of paved recreational paths and improved walking trails that Brad approved over those years.
Brad was also involved as a member of the Middleton/Westport Joint Zoning Committee for all of the years he was on the Board. He was instrumental in working with City officials to set the boundaries of the two communities and protecting many acres of open space and farmland for generations in that work. As a Board member, he was also supportive of joint planning and boundary efforts with Waunakee. Brad’s forward thinking in cooperating with Waunakee led to community cooperation on road improvements, park improvements, trail coordination, facility construction, and contributions to community harmony between the two governments that have probably saved hundreds of thousands of dollars in professional fees and taxes by cooperating on projects, but also by heading off wasting conflicts and unnecessary lawsuits.
In almost all of the candidate interviews that Brad gave over the years with The Waunakee Tribune, he mentioned individual Town employee hires or inter-governmental relations were what he felt were his highest accomplishments for the Town. These were not…not even close. His greatest accomplishment by far was the giving of himself to all of us in this area. His unusual out of the box thinking, his ability to find simple answers to complex issues, his ability to work with others, his genuine concern for people in the community and the Town employees, and his ability to push those he worked with to get the most out of their performance and keep them on their toes: these were the things that he brought to the Westport Board, and the things which helped make our community a great place to live, work, recreate, and raise children.
But there was so much more to Brad Robinson. What you might not have known is that Brad not only did this wonderful service for Westport, but he served his Country in the Marine Corps. He always had to mention not only Veteran’s Day on Nov. 11, but he loved to point out that the birthday of the Marine Corp was actually celebrated the day before. He also then worked at the VA Hospital in Madison in various capacities for 30 years, many of those as the Union Steward at the Hospital, helping to aid those in need work through the myriad of procedures when they faced issues with their jobs.
And to top all of that off, Brad fostered 17 (yes….SEVENTEEN) essentially troubled teenage boys. This was a man of quiet service, and I was lucky enough to know him well and call him friend. I wanted to write this to acknowledge the man who did so much to selflessly and unselfishly serve others not only in this area, but his country. This man was a hero. What a gift he gave to us: himself.
Thank you Brad. Well done. We miss you. Rest in peace soldier.