Sedalia-Pettis County EMA Director Dave Clippert Says Goodbye
Dave Clippert, the longtime director of the Sedalia-Pettis County Emergency Management Agency, will be saying goodbye after more than nine years on the job.
"My last day at work will be May 17," said Clippert, who submitted his resignation in April. Clippert is moving home to Iowa after marrying a Des Moines resident late last year. "We got married in December, and so we've been back and forth about where we're going to live, and finally it just felt right that Des Moines was the place we needed to be to start that new chapter. Renee and I actually went to high school together and graduated together, although we didn't really speak a lot to each other. She thinks I was a snob, and I was just scared to death of girls, couldn't speak to any of them. After her husband passed away we reconnected on Facebook through our class, and then we met at an event back in our hometown...and now we're married and now I'm going to Iowa."
Clippert says that Sedalia has been a very special place for him. "It is the most wonderful town. I really fell in love with Sedalia. The Air Force brought me here in '93. I had been out at Whiteman just a week or two the first time I came down to see Sedalia. There was just something that hit me that day as I drove into town. It said this really feels like a good place to live."
Some of the biggest challenges Clippert says he faced during his time as EMA director was his lack of knowledge about weather. "I knew very little about weather when I started, and it was the thing that scared me the most. I really had to learn quite a bit." Clippert said that his education in weather led to the creation of an email list that he used to communicate storm information to officials throughout the county, and eventually led to the creation of the Sedalia-Pettis County Emergency Management Facebook page.
Clippert says the most memorable thing that happened during his time with the agency was the tornado that hit Sedalia in 2011. "We actually walked away from that with no fatalities and no life-threatening injuries."
Professionally, Clippert says he's most proud of his involvement in getting the Pettis County Ambulance District set up. "Regardless of the recent events that have happened, I think as a legacy, that is something that long after I'm gone from this earth, hopefully that is still continuing on. That was really a pretty big highlight, professionally, to know that I left with a top-notch ambulance service that does save a lot of lives on a regular basis."
Clippert says that even though he is moving away, he is planning on coming back to Sedalia to visit from time to time.