Council honors Coulam upon retirement
The Sandy Council present Mike Coulam with a special plaque honoring his decades of service. (Kelly Cannon/City Journals)
The Sandy City Council honored Community Development Director Mike Coulam during their March 28 meeting to recognize his retirement after 35 years.
Councilman Stephen Smith explained Coulam started his planning career in 1977 for Salt Lake County by assisting in their planning commission. He then worked as a transportation planner for the Wasatch Regional Council. Then in 1979, he was hired to be the economic development planner for Salt Lake County.
“In 1982, he accepted his current position as the community development director for Sandy City, which started with a staff of 10 people and now consists of 25 members,” Smith said. “He led several master planning efforts to help manage the growth, which was rampant and uncontrolled at the time and helped improve the overall service levels of the city.”
Some of the contribution Coulam made during his tenure include the evolution of the city’s innovative sign ordinance, which Smith claims has been copied by many other cities. Coulam also helped create the civic center master plan.
“Sandy City has become a desirable place to live, work and play because of Coulam’s vision for the community, his greatest strengths and abilities are to build a consensus between diverse groups, balancing economic development and citizen participation in order to build a beautiful community and helping to educate public officials and citizen groups on the importance of proper urban planning, which made Sandy a show place for planning in the state of Utah,” Smith said.
Coulam has also been involved in many volunteer group in the community. He joined the Sandy Exchange Club in 1985 and spearheaded the formation of the first Sandy Pride Day in 1986.
“On this day, citizens are encouraged to take pride in their community by taking on special projects to enhance and beautify their neighborhoods,” Smith said. “He has been active in the Boy Scouts of America where he received the silver beaver award for long-term service in local and regional scouting.”
In 1992, Coulam received the annual Noel Bateman award, an award that honors a Sandy resident who has demonstrated long-term dedication and service to the community.
“Sandy City Council honors and commends Michael Coulam for his dedicated service and his example to all Sandy City employees and Sandy City residents and wishes him well in his well-earned retirement from public service,” Smith said.
Coulam’s wife was also honored by the council during the meeting for her constant support.
“We know that there is always a good, strong woman behind any man who gets anything done. We know it,” Councilwoman Maren Baker said. “This is a thank you to you for your support and continuous support and love for our city and your dear husband. Thank you.”