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Jack Buell, a Benewah County Commissioner and local businessman, was formally inducted into the Idaho Hall of Fame early Wednesday. Mr. Buell was named to the hall earlier this year after being nominated for the honor by Freeman Duncan, a former Idaho legislator. Mr. Duncan made the induction presentation at the Timber Plus meeting Wednesday. Mr. Buell owns Jack Buell Trucking with his wife, Eleanor. He joins Vernon Baker, a Medal of Honor recipient, and Ernie Stensgar, former chairman of the Coeur d’Alene Tribe, as the third local resident named to the Idaho Hall of Fame. The organization recognizes Idahoans who have made significant contributions to their community and state. Other notable members of the Hall from northern Idaho Duane Hagadone, Pappy Boyington, Harry Magnuson and Louise Shadduck/St. Maries Gazette Record.
Question: Do you agree with the induction of Benewah County Commissioner Jack Buell into the Idaho Hall of Fame?
It is often said “power corrupts,” and “absolute power corrupts absolutely.” There are exceptions to that rule and one exists in Benewah County. For almost 40 years one person has worn lightly with grace and humility the crown of absolute political power in this north Idaho county: County Commissioner Jack Buell. Now 76 years young he has served the public interest well, won many friends along the way, and most would admit made some enemies also. Jack wears his heart on his sleeve. He personifies the old adage, “show me a man with no enemies and I’ll show you a man with no character. If you stand for anything in this world you make enemies.” By this definition Jack may have lots of character. Two entities that have felt the lash of his tongue and done little to endear themselves to him over the years are the Coeur d’Alene Tribe and the Idaho State Police/Chris Carlson, The Carlson Chronicle. More here.
Question: Do you consider long-time Benewah County Commissioner Jack Buell a good guy or a bad guy?
Bud McCall has decided to run. Last month, the county commissioner was unsure whether he would seek reelection. He has announced, however, that he will run for another term. “There are still a couple of projects that I want to continue to work on,” Mr. McCall said of his decision. Jack Buell will also seek reelection. He and Mr. McCall have served together for 36 years. Mr. Buell was first elected in 1974, and Mr. McCall in 1976. Both will run on the Democratic ticket/Summer Crosby, St. Maries Gazette Record. More here.
Question (for those who may know): Can you tell us anything about Bud McCall, other than he's been running Benewah County with Jack Buell for 36 years?
Will the long-serving county commissioner duo of Jack Buell and Bud McCall be broken by departure? Followers of the Benewah County Commissioners pondered the question last week following a statement by Mr. McCall indicating he was unsure whether he would seek re-election. The two have served together 36 years, since Mr. McCall’s election in 1976. Mr. Buell first won election in 1974. Mr. Buell left no doubt about his plans to stay on. “Why not,” he said. “I think Bud and I can both help people and we have. With budget cuts goals are going to be hard to meet. We are just going to have to figure out how to survive.” Mr. McCall expressed ambivalence saying that he might retire/Mary Orr, St. Maries Gazette Record. More here. (Gazette photo: Jack Buell, left, and state Rep. Dick Harwood in 2010)
Question: Has the commissioner tandem of Jack Buell and Bud McCall been good for Benewah County?
Benewah County Commissioner Jack Buell was one of seven individuals or groups in northern Idaho to receive a Spirit of Idaho award for contributions made to the family of late WWII Medal of Honor recipient Vernon Baker. In addition to monetary support, Mr. Buell donated firewood and assisted during the family’s home improvement project, which was funded completely by private donations. Following Mr. Baker’s death, an account was established by American Legion Post 143 in Post Falls to help pay for travel arrangements to his funeral at Arlington National Cemetery for Mr. Baker’s wife, Heidy, her daughter, Alexandra Pawlik, and Pawlik’s 10-year-old son, Vernon. More than $20,000 was raised/Chris D’Angelo, St. Maries Gazette-Record. More here. (Gazette-Record photo: Benewah County Commissioner Jack Buell was recently presented a Spirit of Idaho award by Rep. Dick Harwood.)
Question: Long-time Commissioner Jack Buell is beloved in parts of Benewah County for his acts of generosity and disliked in other parts for his stand against cross-deputization with the Coeur d’Alene Indian Tribe. Would do you think about him?