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  • Recognizing Ted B. Wahby

    by Representative Sander M. Levin

    Posted on 2015-12-08

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    LEVIN of michigan in the house of representatives Tuesday, December 8, 2015 Mr. LEVIN. Mr. Speaker, I rise today to recognize the life and accomplishments of Ted B. Wahby, who passed away on Saturday, December 5, 2015. He was a warm friend who leaves a legacy of superb public service in its best sense. He will be deeply, personally missed by so many of us privileged to work hand-in-hand, and I am honored to pay tribute to his remarkable life accomplishments.

    Ted Wahby was a pillar in the City of St. Clair Shores, Macomb County and the greater region for over 50 years. He and his wife Yvonne moved to St. Clair Shores in 1964 and raised six children there. The Wahby family planted strong roots in the city as faithful members of St. Margaret of Scotland Catholic Church and the Shorewood Kiwanis. During this time Ted embarked upon a successful career working at Comerica Bank, serving in numerous high-level capacities for 31 years, including Vice President.

    In addition to Ted Wahby's love of family and pride in his successful business career, he held a deep belief of the importance of giving back to the community. He first sought public office in 1979 and was elected to Lake Shore School Board. Two years later he was elected to the St. Clair Shores City Council, and two years after that as Mayor, where he provided strong, forward thinking leadership from 1983 to 1995. Ted then decided to take his local experience to the next level by serving as Treasurer of Macomb County from 1995 until his passing. Over this twenty year period Ted devoted his immense talents to serving residents in a way that focused on the human element, while using his profound management skills to place the county in a strong fiscal position.

    Whatever public office he held, for him the test always was how his actions would improve the lives of others, and in our many discussions, he was most proud how as county Treasurer, he helped keep thousands of families who experienced financial stress from losing their homes to foreclosure.

    His community and civic involvement was rivaled by few. The leadership he provided on so many boards locally and throughout the region is yet another testament to his strong desire to serve the public. Ted was not one to seek credit for his work, yet he was the recipient of numerous prestigious awards and recognitions from charitable and philanthropic organizations, far too many to list.

    If there is one legacy of Ted Wahby's service that will be remembered and valued above all else, it is his premier leadership and advocacy for better health care. As a member of McLaren Macomb Hospital's Board of Trustees since 2000 and in the role of Chairman since 2002, Ted strategically leveraged his business and political skills to make critical advances in the health care field. Ted's mission of opening the Ted B. Wahby Cancer Center in 2004 was very personal for him and Yvonne, who both lost family members to cancer. He saw the need for compassionate, high quality care close to home, since at the time nearly 70% of Macomb cancer patients had to drive a far distance for care. He was a tireless supporter and fund-raiser from the very beginning, and worked for many years to influence local leaders to invest in the capital campaign. For his dedicated efforts, Ted earned many accolades, including the 2005 Health Care Leadership Award from the Michigan Health & Hospital Association, and the 2005 Thanks for Giving Award, presented for extraordinary volunteer service to hospitals in the Metro Detroit area.

    Over these last few days since Ted's passing, there have been countless heartwarming statements made by so many, but the one that sums it up for me is that above all, Ted Wahby was a family man, as stated by his children. His love for his wife, children, nine grandchildren; and three great-grandchildren defined who he was and he set an example for these generations to follow.

    Mr. Speaker, in closing, I am profoundly honored to have called Ted Wahby my friend, and thankful for the opportunity to work side-by-side during his career and witness first-hand his effective leadership and compassion. I am humbled to join with his family, friends and the community at-large in mourning his loss, while celebrating his life and honoring his accomplishments.

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