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Posted on: December 19, 2023

Wangemann resigns from Gainesville City Council Ward 4 seat

George Wangemann 2020

GAINESVILLE, Ga. (Dec. 19, 2023) – With the heaviest of hearts, George Wangemann has announced his resignation from his Ward 4 seat, effective at the end of the year.

Having devoted nearly 40 years to representing Ward 4, Wangemann was the longest-serving seated member of the Gainesville City Council – a responsibility he never took lightly or for granted. Citing his declining health, Wangemann shared his decision to vacate his post Tuesday, Dec. 19, at the latest meeting of the Gainesville City Council.

“It has been an absolute honor and privilege to serve the City of Gainesville for what some would consider a lifetime,” Wangemann said. “Devoting these last 38 years to serving on the Gainesville City Council has been more fulfilling and rewarding than I ever imagined possible. Through this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, I have met extraordinary people, including my fellow councilmembers you see before you today, and have been blessed with valuable opportunities to enact change for the benefit of my fellow Gainesvillians. While I wish my health allowed me to finish out my current term, I can truthfully say I have tried my hardest to act in the best interest of the people of Gainesville. Thank you for trusting me all these years to be your voice – I hope I have made this Council, this community and my family proud.”

First elected in 1986, Wangemann completed nine four-year terms and, at the time of his resignation, was serving in his 10th. Last elected in 2021, Wangemann’s existing term was set to expire in December 2025.

“It is an end of an era for the Gainesville City Council,” said Mayor Sam Couvillon, who has served alongside Wangemann since 2013. “George will be missed for many reasons, but none more so than for being one of the most kind and thoughtful people that I have ever been associated with. George always puts other people first and he is a genuine soul. I will miss his thoughtful discernment when working through tough issues, but more than anything, I will miss the way he treated others with respect and how he would always volunteer to help others.”

During his time on Council, and before the role of mayor became an elected seat, Wangemann was appointed mayor from 1995-96 and 2004-05.

Wangemann was named Council Member of the Year in 2018 by the Georgia Mountains Regional Commission, for which he recently served as chairman.

A strong advocate of community beautification and outreach, Wangemann’s passions have included serving on the Georgia Mountain Food Bank and Keep Hall Beautiful boards of directors, and volunteering with Lake Lanier Association’s Shore Sweep event, Lanier's largest annual event to “sweep” debris and trash from the shoreline. Wangemann has also been passionate about involving the community in the work of Council, knocking on 22,000-plus doors in Gainesville-Hall County to invite business owners and residents to Council meetings and work sessions.

Though he’s served on various boards and committees within the Gainesville-Hall County community, an effort Wangemann is most proud of is conversations initiated in 2005 that resulted in adoption of an ordinance prohibiting smoking in certain facilities and areas within City limits.

In January 2019, Wangemann also received the Georgia Municipal Association Certificate of Excellence Award after completing 120 hours of training.

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