Dale Rudolph to resign mid-term from Poulsbo City Council

POULSBO – Dale Rudolph will resign from the Poulsbo City Council in December, the 17-year councilman announced Wednesday night.

Rudolph, 62, said he looks forward to focusing on his personal life after satisfying his goals in city leadership. He will leave his position Dec. 31. His term would have expired in 2013.

“This isn't political. I don't feel negative about it. I actually feel relieved,” Rudolph said. "I am really ready to move on to my other life."

Over the next four months he'll wrap up various council assignments, including a membership on Puget Sound Regional Council's Growth Management Policy Board and the city's Economic Development Committee.

Rudolph served as a member of the City Hall Project Team and as liason to the Poulsbo Historical Society. He has, at one time or another, served on every council committee.

Rudolph said he plans to become more involved with other activities, including his church.

Several council members expressed shock at the announcement.

Councilwoman Linda Berry-Maraist called his 17 years of service “a tremendous gift to the city.”

Rudolph had a long career as an engineer for the Navy before entering the political sphere. He often translated that experience into growth planning, engineering and public works knowhow, and was a consistent voice for fiscal responsibility.

Rudolph graduated from North Kitsap High in 1966, and still lives near the school. He and his wife, Barbara, have two grown children.

Rudolph's parents moved to Poulsbo in 1958 and spent 10 years as business partners in the town's former 12-lane bowling alley, the Poulsbo Bowl. Rudolph's father, Curt, served on the City Council for nearly 12 years and served as interim mayor in 1985.

Rudolph learned about the hard work of leadership from his father and from Clyde Caldart, the father of one of his friends and mayor of Poulsbo in the 1970s, he said.

“The Rudolph family has been a fixture in one form or another here in city hall going back 30 plus years,” said Councilman Ed Stern. “This is quite the end of an era.”

The city will appoint a replacement for Rudolph through an application and interview process. Rudolph was appointed to his seat by then-mayor Mitch Mitchusson in 1993. He segued the appointment into a career on the council, holding his post through four subsequent elections.

Rudolph defeated his 2001 challenger by a 300-vote margin, and won 62 percent of votes in a 2005 re-election bid. He ran unopposed in 2009.

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