Former city councilor remembered for her contributions to New Ulm

HACKENSACK – Former New Ulm City Councilor Virginia “Ginny” Burnett Anderson was remembered for her community activism and her profound influence on the city on Thursday.

Burnett Anderson died Thursday in Hackensack at age 89. She served on the New Ulm City Council from 1974 to 1984. She was one of the first two women to be elected to the council.

Former City Manager Richard Salvati said Burnett contributed a positive presence to the council.

“She was always involved and always took a proactive approach,” he said. “She was instrumental in moving forward with the Family Rec Center.”

According to Salvati, the decision to construct the Vogel Arena and Family Recreation Center was controversial at the time, but Burnett Anderson’s support for the facility made it possible. She was also involved in several other city improvements including North Park, Senior Citizens center, the Battery building, the Glockenspiel, Schonlau Park and City Hall renovations.

Salvati last spoke with Burnett Anderson a year ago. Even though she had retired to Hackensack, she continued to follow events in New Ulm.

Salvati summarized his former colleague saying, “She was a marvelous woman.”

“I can only say good things about her,” said former Mayor Carl Wyczawski. “She was a good city councilor, who was willing to cooperate. Her spirit of working together was greatly appreciated because many decisions made at that time were contentious.”

Daniel Beranek served with Burnett Anderson on the Council. He credited her with the ability to see farther down the road.

Beranek explained that some elected officials could only see how a decision would affect the present, but Burnett could anticipate how issues could impact the community for years. He cited her work in restoration of the Lind House. She was a founding member of the Lind House Association and its first president. “That was not an easy project to start with,” said Beranek. “Most people would have just thought to get rid of the old building, but she saw the big picture.”

Although Beranek did not always agree with Burnett, he appreciated her commitment to city business.

“She was fun to work with. She took the job very seriously and was not afraid to speak up,” said Beranek. “She was not there for her ego; she was doing it help the community.”

A memorial service is scheduled for 11 a.m., Saturday, March 29 at the Union Congregational Church, 401 Lake Avenue East, Hackensack.

A full death notice is published on this web site under obituaries.

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