Janesville49.1°

Dommershausen resigns from farmers market board

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ANN MARIE AMES
May 20, 2010
— Renee Dommershausen resigned from the Janesville Farmers Market Board on Wednesday.

Dommershausen has been the board chairwoman since April 27.


Dommershausen's resignation leaves five people on the nine-person board made up of vendors and non-vendors.


Steve Schmid resigned May 13. Jenny Skelly and Randy Thompson also resigned this month.


The string of resignations followed a May 8 article in the Gazette about reports of vendors being turned away from the market.


People interviewed by the Gazette have said the board has limited the number and variety of new vendors, failed to follow its own policies, refused volunteer outside help, employed a market manager some find difficult to work with and expected too much of that part-time manager.


Dommershausen felt she did not have time to learn about the recent changes to the board and the events leading up to the changes, she wrote in a letter dated May 19.


"I began to feel this was a no-win situation," Dommershausen wrote.


Dommershausen's personal business has suffered in the three weeks she has devoted to learning about the farmers market, she wrote.


"Because so many resignations occurred in such a short time, it was difficult to piece everything together quickly," Dommershausen wrote.


Dommershausen's goal was to support the wholesome, family-oriented market and to not waste the hard work that was put into the market the last six years, she wrote.


"I increasingly fear for the market's future," Dommershausen wrote. On the other hand, board member Val Heider was optimistic Wednesday night when she talked to the Gazette about the situation.


The remaining board members will meet, but Heider does not know when, she said.


Heider thinks it would be good for the board to have an organizational meeting in private in order to get a handle on things before meeting with the public.


With the resignations coming so quickly of late, it's been hard to get a handle on what is happening and what has happened in the past, Heider said.


"But maybe that's for the best," Heider said. "To move forward."


Heider said several people have shown interest in joining the board.


"We'll get her together," Heider said about the market. "There are some good people wanting to come on to the board, who really want to be on there."



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