John Zizka can best be described as a thinker, as evidenced by his admission of staying up until 2 a.m. reading most nights, because the wheels just keep turning. He lived the first 18 years of his life in Cleveland, but has been a resident of Portage County ever since.
He always had an interest in civic affairs and government, so he began attending township meetings. From there, he was appointed to the township Zoning Commission, then served on the Board of Zoning Appeals. First appointed as a trustee in 2003, he ran successfully for three addditional four-year terms.
John’s father taught him to value rights and liberties, and to stand up for the principles in which you believe, even if others oppose you. “I’m motivated by a sense of justice and serving all people,” he says.
Formerly an avid canoer, John and his wife Kathy have been married 48 years and raised two sons, now in their 40s. He served as a letter carrier for 42 years.
“My career helped in my role as a township official, because I dealt with the public on a daily basis and treated them as an extended family,” which he now tries his best to emulate with his township residents.
For those thinking about getting involved in township government, Zizka offers the following advice: “You must have the time and desire to serve your community. You must also understand that things can’t be changed overnight.”