A new face joined the Ceres City Council on Friday evening when Linda Ryno joined Ken Lane in taking the oath of office to embark on four-year terms on the Ceres City Council.
Watching the swearing-in ceremony at the Ceres Community Center were well-wishers that included family and friends. Ryno's mother, Elfriede Fitzwater of Manteca who immigrated to the United States in 1948 from Berlin, Germany, sat in the front row.
"I'm real proud of her," said Fitzwater.
Her husband, retired Police Sgt. Sam Ryno, also watched on.
Lane's supporters on hand included his wife, Yvette Lane, and mother Faye Lane.
Both Ryno and Lane were elected on Nov. 5. Ryno collected 1,573 votes, or 37.15 percent. Lane retained his seat in a second-place finish with 1,357 votes, or 32.05 percent. Hugo Molina was edged out for the second time in his political career.
Ryno is the fourth woman to ever serve on the Ceres City Council. Others who preceded her were Barbara Hinton and DeLinda Moore, who became mayors, and Lisa Mantarro Moore who was vice mayor before stepping off in 2005.
Much of the short ceremony was spent commending outgoing council member Eric Ingwerson who finished a two-year term but concludes a lengthy career of public service. Ingwerson served on the council on and off since 1994, twice as mayor. He served on the Ceres City Council from 1994 to 2003 and also as mayor from 1998-99 and from 2001-03. He served a term as a member of the Ceres Unified School District Board of Trustees from 2007 to 2011.
The light-hearted feel of the meeting started off as Ingwerson glad-handed the room and repeated a number of times that he would be "taking a nap" now that he is leaving the council. Laughter broke out when Deputy City Manager Sheila Cumberland took the roll call and pronounced Ingwerson's name as "Erickson," to which he repeated the name as a question.
Ceres Mayor Chris Vierra presented Ingwerson a plaque and noted that he has been a "staple in this community and has been involved in all sorts of positions ... and I know that his knowledge and experience will sorely be missed."
Vierra noted that Ingwerson appointed him to the Ceres Planning Commission and later to the City Council.
Ingwerson has given over 21 years of service to the city and School Board. Vierra drew a comparison of the retirement from service to that of a boat owner: "the happiest day is when you buy the boat and the second happiest day is when you sell it."
Raspy voiced from a cold, Ingwerson thanked citizens for allowing him to serve.
"It has been a pleasure, a challenge, it's been humbling at times," said Ingwerson who noted that he was 34 when appointed to the Ceres Planning Commission in 1988. "I'll be 60 next year and the time has gone by fast. We've accomplished much in the last 25 years and there's still a lot left to do here in Ceres and I know that when I leave here I leave this task in very capable hands."
The laughs continued when Councilman Bret Durossette said he remembered seeing "this guy in town when I was a little kid growing up." Durossette said he would miss Ingwerson sitting by his side.
Councilman Mike Kline lauded Ingwerson as "Mr. Ceres" for being so involved in community and emceeing at public events with his wit and humor.
Councilman Lane, a close friend of Ingwerson's who both serve in the Ceres Lions Club, noted how the two grew up together on Thomas Avenue. "Eric is my friend and it's been an honor to serve with you, sir. Eric has given a lot to this community."
Acting City Manager Art deWerk added his thanks, mentioning that it was Ingwerson who recruited him to become police chief from Casper, Wyo.
"You are one of the most energetic, enthusiastic, upbeat people I've ever met," deWerk told Ingwerson. "You are the voice of reason when there have been difficult discussions among the various councilmembers."
State Senator Anthony Cannella and former mayor, appeared with a resolution honoring Ingwerson. "Really what you do goes beyond the city of Ceres and we're going to miss you on the city council," said Cannella.
Supervisor Jim DeMartini also gave his commendation.
Ingwerson said he nearly forgot to thank his wife, Carol, for "putting up" with his many years of serving in community politics.
After Ryno and Lane took their oaths, Vierra appointed Durossette as vice mayor. Lane had served as vice mayor for the past four years.
Ryno, 59, a resident of Ceres since 1983, worked as the administrative secretary for the Ceres Planning Department for 29 years.
Lane, 53, served on the Ceres Planning Commission before he was elected to the City Council in 2005, again in 2009 and then again last month. Lane is a member of the Ceres Lions Club. He is employed with MoCal Office Systems.