In a heartfelt City Council meeting on December 5, 2023, North Bend’s Council, Mayor Pro Tem Koellen, and staff gathered to honor Councilmember Jonathan Rosen for his dedicated service spanning 18 years.
Rosen, who chose not to seek re-election, will officially end his term on December 31, 2023. He took the opportunity to thank the Council, staff, and community for their enduring support and collaborative spirit.
His colleagues, including Mayor Pro Tem Koellen and Mayor-Elect Miller, reciprocated the gratitude. “It has been a joy to work alongside you. Thank you for everything you’ve done,” expressed Mayor-Elect Miller, highlighting Rosen’s significant impact.
A previous event on November 7 also celebrated Rosen’s contributions, with Mayor McFarland noting, “Jonathan and I both began service to the City in the early 2000s – he on the Economic Development Commission and I on Parks then Planning Commissions.”
Throughout his tenure, Rosen engaged deeply in various roles. Not only did he actively participate in all four City Council Committees, particularly the Finance and Administration Committee, but he also served as a liaison for regional committees, enhancing the city’s collaboration and outreach.
When reflecting on his time on the council, Rosen shared some of his most cherished experiences. “The first one is fun. When my son was in second grade at North Bend Elementary, his teacher was talking about doing a civics tour when my son mentioned that I was on the city council. Well, one thing led to another, and the next thing you know, for nearly 14 years, Mayor Ken and I hosted the second graders every year at city hall,” he reminisced. He fondly recalled the children’s innocent queries and fascination with the city hall’s old jail cells.
He also highlighted the strong bonds formed during his service: “My second-best memory, by far and away, was the amazing friendships I formed with many past and present staff and council members. These friendships will last me a lifetime; I was so lucky to be a part of this amazing team in North Bend.”
Among his proudest achievements, Rosen cited his involvement in renovating Torguson Park ballfields, a project he worked on alongside volunteer organizations and city staff. He views the ballfields as a key city asset, hoping for continued investment in them.
Looking ahead, Rosen hopes North Bend will continue to evolve while retaining its essence. “As our old city administrator, Duncan Wilson, told me, keep moving forward; don’t rest on your laurels. I hope we continue to find that balance between preserving and improving our town,” he stated, expressing confidence in the current team of staff and elected officials.
With his tenure concluding, Rosen plans to focus on personal pursuits. “Travel and family time,” he said, outlining his future plans.
“Throughout the years,” Mayor McFarland commented, “we had many deep conversations around city policy and our respective beliefs on appropriate standards and policy for city codes. While we, at times, were far apart on specifics, our talks were always civil and with mutual respect. Councilmember Rosen also always made known to me ahead of time if he was going to take a position in opposition to or introduce an amendment to an agenda bill coming before the Council, the so-called ‘no surprise rule,’ and this I greatly respected. This decorum and respect shown by him, as well as recently resigned Councilmember Ross, are greatly missed.”
The December 5 City Council meeting is available for viewing on the city website at the Media Center, offering the public a chance to witness this significant transition in North Bend’s leadership.