Kerkman delivers 2024 State of the County address, unveils new logo for Kenosha County

Kenosha County Executive Samantha Kerkman presented her annual State of the County address to the County Board this evening, highlighting recent successes while unveiling a new county logo.

“The State of Kenosha County is strong — and it’s looking better all the time,” Kerkman said, referencing a rebranding process more than a year in the making.

The new logo, Kenosha County’s first since 1982, moves the county’s brand into the 21st century, Kerkman said.

“The new logo was designed to embody the essence of Kenosha County — a mix of new and old, honoring our past while looking toward the future,” Kerkman said.

Prominent in the logo are images of the 1866 Southport Lighthouse near the Lake Michigan shore, as well as the recently developed Veterans Honor Plaza at the Kenosha County Veterans Memorial Park on the far-west end of the county. A ribbon of green in the logo represents the county’s parks and rural areas, while a pair of blue ribbons signifies Lake Michigan and the county’s inland lakes.

The logo design was completed by a team of county staff and County Board members, including Supervisors Laura Belsky and Erin Decker and former Supervisors Zach Rodriguez and Zach Stock.

“The team that developed this logo sees it as a perfect reflection of our identity as a county — a symbol that residents can be proud of, and that visitors can identify with,” Kerkman said. “As we continue to grow and evolve as a county, this logo will serve as a constant reminder of our unique character and unwavering spirit.”

The rollout of the logo begins immediately and will be a driving factor in a refresh of the county website that will occur in the coming months, Kerkman said.

In addition to the logo announcement, Kerkman’s speech included recognition of the nine new members of the County Board who were elected last month, along with the corresponding supervisors who departed the board. In particular, Kerkman acknowledged former Supervisors Terry Rose and John O’Day, who departed with a combined 66 years of experience.

Kerkman noted that she and new County Board Chairman Monica M. Yuhas are the first all-female executive and board leadership team in Kenosha County’s history.

Citing a watershed change in leadership in the community over the last two years, Kerkman said she looks forward to working with newly elected Kenosha Mayor David Bogdala to further strengthen the relationship between the city and county, seeking out opportunities to work together to benefit the entire community.

“As I’ve often said, Kenosha County is one community,” Kerkman said. “When the east end prospers, the west end benefits, and vice versa.”

Kerkman said she also works forward to working with the County Board to produce a high-quality budget in 2025, while continuing the county’s top-tier AAA bond rating.

Kerkman noted that Kenosha County will find itself in the center of the national spotlight this summer, when Milwaukee hosts the Republican National Convention, and the Democratic National Convention is in Chicago.

As the Gateway to Wisconsin, Kenosha County will see an impact from these conventions,” Kerkman said. “Delegates and other visitors will fill our hotels, and we’ll likely see some extra traffic on our roads. The nation will be watching us — and we will shine.”

Other highlights included in Kerkman’s address included:

  • An update on the ongoing Human Services Building project, a legacy project that will stand the test of time.
  • Kenosha County Public Health’s launch of the Kenosha Overdose Response Initiative (KORI), collaborative effort with the Kenosha Fire Department and Oakwood Clinical Associates to bring Narcan and other resource information to overdose survivors.
  • The county’s partnership with Lake Behavioral Hospital in Waukegan, Ill., which she said is projected to save the county some $400,000 in Chapter 51mental health detention costs this year, while providing more convenient care for families.
  • The continuing work of the Broadband Advisory Committee, which Kerkman convened in 2023 and will soon come forth with a recommendation to use American Rescue Plan Act funding to bring high-speed internet service to residents in unserved or underserved areas.


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