Thomas Whitener – A Private Citizen Attempts to Recall Kalamazoo County Treasurer
KALAMAZOO, Mich. — An individual has attempted to recall the county treasurer over financial concerns in his office, but Michigan authorities denied his petition because it doesn’t meet legal guidelines for recalling public officials from office. Meanwhile, Kalamazoo County hired an accounting firm in an effort to increase transparency and accountability.
Early Life and Education
Thomas Whitener was an athletic child, excelling at many disciplines including football at Hickory High School before earning a scholarship to Duke University to study English literature and civil rights issues – not forgetting being an accomplished artist himself.
Whitener was a powerful voice during his tenure on the federal bench. He contributed significantly to District of Columbia v. Heller – an iconic gun control case – as part of the conservative majority and pend a notable dissent in Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission – overturning decades-long precedent with ease.
Thomas Whitener currently serves as managing partner at Whitener Law Firm in Albuquerque and specializes in personal injury and insurance bad faith claims. With over two decades of experience behind him and a commitment to being an ardent advocate for his clients.
Thomas Whitener is a lawyer at Whitener Law Firm, which specializes in personal injury and insurance bad faith claims. With extensive experience handling these cases and dedication to client care, Thomas also actively contributes to Albuquerque community development by giving back.
Formerly, Mr. Oesch served as president of Energy Spectrum’s midstream private equity business. His duties included leading negotiations, structuring investment transactions and acting as board member with portfolio companies’ management teams.
In December, he was asked by the Kalamazoo County Board of Commissioners to resign following allegations regarding financial mismanagement – specifically millions not invested and an accumulation of unprocessed receipts. Since then he has retained an accounting firm.
Achievement and Honors
Thomas Whitener made Michigan history in 2022 when he became the first black person ever elected to any local government body in Michigan. He won election as Kalamazoo County treasurer over Republican incumbent Mary Balkema.
Refreshment Solutions was also founded under Whitener’s direction; it combined Imperial Trading convenience stores and Whitener Snacks vending operations under its control, with annual revenue rising more than 1,500% during his leadership.
Thomas has received many honors during her academic career at Catawba College. Her achievements include being recognized with the Edgar and Catherine Whitener Award each year; it is given out to female and male seniors who exemplify character, leadership, and scholarship qualities. Whitener serves on the National Automatic Merchandiser Association’s (NAMA) board; this organization is one of the largest and most influential in vending.
He was an advocate for American art. Additionally, he was renowned as both an art dealer and auctioneer.
He is survived by his wife, children and extended family and will be memorialized at a later date. A service to mark his life will be planned shortly.
Whitener refuses to step aside despite numerous issues that could cost taxpayers millions. Instead, he claims he’s working to resolve them, as well as being elected for four years. A Michigan panel certifying recall petitions rejected an attempt by citizens to recall him due to lacking sufficient facts and clarity; an anticipated recall attempt against Whitener should occur sometime around 2024 and could mark the first time since 2020 that one has been made against one in Kalamazoo County.
Thomas Whitener is both a licensed real estate agent and an entrepreneur. In his earlier career he designed interactive systems and balance systems. Today he serves on the board of JPW Holdings GP LLC which distributes machine tools and equipment.
Whitener was elected Treasurer of Kalamazoo County in 2020 after unseating an incumbent for 13 years. During his campaign, he promised more transparency and accountability for residents while altering the culture within his office.
His survivors include his wife Becky; daughter Lauren; sister Cherry Rohe of Abilene and nephews Ethan and Austin DePue of Colleyville. Funeral services will be Thursday at Bunch-Johnson Funeral Home in Abilene with burial to follow at Iredell Memorial Gardens the following day from 8:30 am until 1:30 pm both days. His family will welcome visitors between 2 to 4 p.m. at Bunch-Johnson and from 8:30 am until 1:30 p.m. at Iredell Memorial Gardens on both days to receive friends from 2 to 4 p.m. at both funeral homes on Thursday with services to follow at Iredell Memorial Gardens to Iredell Memorial Gardens as part of an Iredell Memorial Gardens visit by funeral home staff during both days from Iredell Memorial Gardens as burial takes place. On Friday – 9 am until 1 pm (local).