Village Council

The Decatur Village Council was created to provide quality public services at the lowest possible tax rate to promote health, comfort, safety and convenience to its citizens and the community. Comprised of six Council Members and the Village President, Village Residents elect council members for four-year terms. The Village Council also appoints a Village Manager to oversee the day-to-day operations of the Village.


Meetings are held the first Monday of every month at 7:00 pm in the Council Chambers at the Village Hall. If the first Monday falls on a Holiday, the meeting will be on Tuesday.

VILLAGE PRESIDENT Ali-Elwaer-225x224
Ali Elwaer - Email

The President shall be president of the Council, and preside at the meetings of the Council.
President Elwaer had previously served 12 years on the Village Council as a Trustee and President Pro-Tem.  Ali has lived in the Village of Decatur since 1990.  He works at Cook Nuclear Plant  in the Chemistry Department.  Ali earned his Bachelors of Science Degree in Chemistry from Western Michigan University.  Ali is married to his wife Diane of 33 years and they are the proud parents of their son Jamil.  Ali has previously served on the Village of Decatur’s Planning Commission, and Decatur Public School Board.  When free, Ali enjoys jogging with his dog, Takoda around Decatur.  Ali was elected in 2016.  What is your vision for the Village of Decatur? – “I would like for the Village of Decatur to be a place that people choose to live and work.  I would also like for the Village of Decatur to be a place that all of the employees feel like they are part of a team and are appreciated.” Why are you on the Village Council? – “The Village of Decatur is a wonderful community.  By being on the Village Council I want to make sure that the Village of Decatur provides the best public services that we can for the community.”

VILLAGE PRESIDENT PRO TEMCharlene-Jackson-225x225
Charlene Jackson - Email

Charlene has lived in Decatur for her entire life along with her husband who is another Decatur native.  She has two daughters and one grandson that she adores.  Charlene has worked for PNC Bank for over 30 years where she is using her Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration which she retained from the University of Phoenix.  When time allows; Charlene volunteers for fundraisers across Decatur which benefits the Decatur-Hamilton Fire Department, Decatur Public Schools or Active Service Members.  Charlene was appointed in 2016.  What is your vision for the Village of Decatur? “My vision for Decatur’s future is one where the community works together to make Decatur an attractive place to live, work and play.”  Why are you on the Village Council? -”I am on the Village Council because I want to make a difference.  I want to work together with others to make my vision a reality.

Kim Gunther - Email

Kim is a graduate of Decatur High School and the Van Buren Vo-Tech Center, since then she has worked in County Government.  Kim is currently employed by Kalamazoo County as the Administrative Assistant for the Office of Finance (Purchasing) and Buildings and Grounds Department.  Kim has lived within the Decatur Village limits since 1980.  Kim’s parents, son and granddaughter, all live here in Decatur as well.  When Kim is not enjoying her family and friends, or working, she can be found supporting the Decatur VFW Post 6248 where she is an Auxiliary member.  Kim feels Decatur is her hometown and she would never live anywhere else! Kim was elected in 2016. What is your vision for the Village of Decatur? – “I hope that we can maintain and improve upon things that we already have such as what we have recently done with the improvements at Red Woolfe Park.”  Why are you on the Village Council? – “I hope to make decisions that are for the good of the residents of the Village.  I also want all of our residents, and those that have interests within the Village, to be treated in a fair and equal manner.”

Janice Benson - Email
I am a graduate of Kalamazoo Valley Community College where I hold a degree in Electrical Technology.  Who knew that my journey to become an electrician would lead me to my wonderful husband, Dan, and a quaint, one light village I’d call home?  In 2019, I changed careers to work closer to home.  I am currently employed as the Office Manager at Caron Custom Homes in Decatur.   I am a huge animal lover and have dedicated most of my life to volunteering and being a voice for the voiceless animals.  I have also volunteered at the GKAMA food pantry out of Gobles for several years lending a hand or hug when needed.  I believe in paying it forward in different ways. 
What is your vision for the Village of Decatur? – “I would like to maintain the small-town community feel and expand on bringing new ideas for community events that draw people in to experience our wonderful village and choose to live, work, and play here!”  Why are you on the village council? – “I am on the Village Council to make the best overall decisions for all village residents in a positive way.  I am approachable and open to new ideas.  I will insist all Village residents are treated with dignity and respect.”

Jessica Pelfrey - Email


Michael Verran - Email

Robert Mead Jr. - Email