LOUDONVILLE — Effective early October, Cathy Lance became the newest member of Loudonville Village Council.
The finance manager for H & H Custom Homes admitted she hadn't thought about serving on council when she was approached by one of the members who asked her to consider being appointed with the pending resignation of member Traci Cooper.
"There was an irony in this, because eight years before I replaced Traci as treasurer of the L-P Music Boosters," Lance said with a smile. "That worked out well, so I said I would serve, and was appointed.
"So far, I really am enjoying the experience," she added. "I was appointed to chair the finance committee, which Cooper did, and I enjoy that because I enjoy working with numbers. I am also very impressed with the competency and professionalism of the village staff. They know their jobs very well and show a willingness to share their wealth of knowledge with me."
Lance is a life-long Loudonville resident and daughter of former Loudonville Fire Chief Jim Danner and Margie Danner, who serves as general manager of the local radio station, WZLP, 95.7 FM.
"Both have always put their hearts and souls into work for the community, and I strive to follow in their footsteps," she said.
She graduated from Loudonville High School in 1985 and attended North Central Technical College for two years, earning an associate's degree in business.
"My first real job was as a sales representative for PV Communications," she said. "Later, with small kids at home, I decided to work part time and secured a part-time position at Mansfield Plumbing Products in Perrysville, where I worked for six years.
"I left there for a start-up company in Ashland where I worked for two years, but that position did not end well, so I came back to work in Loudonville at H & H Custom Homes in 2006," she continued.
Always involved with finance at H & H, she said her position has grown into a more diverse role.
"When I started, we had just started Mohican Log Homes, but later, we were involved in building a full-scale housing development in Ashland, that involved condominiums as well as single family homes, and suddenly my job became more involved. Still later, we sold off the H & H Lumber portion of the business to Premier Metals, and closing out a business of that sized involves a huge amount of accounting work."
She has been at H & H for 12 years,making her, outside of the owners, "the sixth or eighth most senior member of our 53-employee work force."
In her experience, she also said "I have come to love working with the Amish. They are extremely hard working, but they are also a lot of fun to work with. I feel like our three owners, Uri, Levi and Danny Hostetler, are part of my family."
She said that most of the Amish employed at H & H are from the Wooster/Apple Creek area.
Lance and husband Ron, a teacher and former head football coach at Loudonville High School, started dating about the time she graduated from NCSC, and were married in 1993. They have three daughters.
The eldest, Allie (Cody) Ullman is employed at the Olde Jaol Restaurant in Wooster, and has two children, Cole, 8, and Ember, 1.
Valerie (Tyler) Book lives in Silverdale, Washington, near Seattle, where Tyler is stationed in the U.S. Navy and where she works as a dental assistant.
The youngest, Carrie, is a senior at Loudonville High School and is currently looking at colleges.
In addition to her past involvement with the Music Boosters, she is a former board member of the Mohican Area Community Fund and is still active in their Loudonville-Perrysville Alumni Association.
"I worked with Sue Banks setting up the decade reunions a few years ago that were a lot of fun, and this fall on Friday night of fair week we held a school reunion that was very successful. We hope to hold another," she said.
With serving on council, Lance said she feels the biggest challenge is "keeping everything in the village, from the streets to the landscaping, nice. This is a challenge because everything is expensive. But our village crews are doing a really good job to see that this is done and to make improvements as they are needed.
"The new maintenance building will be a wonderful addition and will help us keep up with things, and I really appreciate the input I have received from the police and fire chief. Those are very complex positions."
Asked if she had any hobbies, she said she is always working with things artistic, like painting and embroidery, and she looks forward to taking art related classes at two of downtown Loudonville's newest businesses, the Indigo Owl and the Alabaster Mouse.
"I also really enjoy cooking, including trying new cooking techniques," she said. "Right now I am really into making stir fry dishes."