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Benjamin Hover, Lansdowne’s Council President has been living in the Borough of Lansdowne for almost 20 years. A graduate of Hiram College, the Ohio native and his wife came to the Philadelphia area after she accepted a job in the Swathmore area. Continuing his education, Benjamin received a Master of Science in education from St. Joseph University and then his Master of Arts in English from Villanova. As with all Lansdowne council members, the position is voluntary. His days are spent as an English teacher at Philadelphia’s Central High School. He enjoys teaching and misses being in the classroom with his students. The switch to the online platform has made him adjust his teaching style and he is acutely aware of the struggles of his fellow educators and students having to adapt to the new format. He misses the conversational back and forth with his students and looks forward to returning to the classroom.
Mid-March’s shut down due to the Covid-19 pandemic presented the Council and Mayor with many challenges. With the continued response to Covid-19 remaining fluid, Benjamin, the council, and Mayor follow the Covid-19 numbers closely. They continue to work diligently to support the Lansdowne community, looking for creative solutions to help the many residents who are still not working.
With the retirement announcement of Chief of Police, Dan Donegan, Benjamin and the council have begun the task of finding his replacement. Chief Donegan leaves behind a well-trained, professional force whose members work for the well-being of all residents and feels that interim Chief Sgt. Kenny Rutherford will continue that effort. The borough is casting a wide net looking for its new chief. Any candidate for the position must understand the core values of the Lansdowne community, and must be committed to leading a police department that celebrates and serves all of its residents.
As a believer in public service, Benjamin previously served a two-year term on the council and on January 6th of 2020 took his place as council president and will serve a four-year term ending in 2024. As well as serving as council president, Benjamin also chairs the Economic Development & Code Enforcement, is a member of the Technology Committee, and the Inclusionary Committee. The recently created Inclusionary Committee, an ad hoc committee, was created to develop inclusionary policies and recommendations for Lansdowne Boards and Commissions. The committee’s focus is to ensure the development of arts, recreation, culture, and economic planning that includes all members of the Lansdowne community.
Benjamin and his family love living in Lansdowne and being a part of the community. He has seen time and time again neighbors coming together to help and support each other. He and his wife joke that the only way they would ever consider moving from the borough is to take all of their neighbors with them, and since that is not possible, they are just going to stay put.