Gramentz retires from NUPD
NEW ULM — Senior Administrative Assistant Judy Gramentz said life won’t be the same for her after she leaves the New Ulm Police Department this week after more than 40 years service.
“The police department is like family to me. It’s like home here,” Gramentz said from her office. “Now, I’ll have to read, relax, spend more time with our grandchildren and go to the lake.”
She credited New Ulm High School office education class instructor Warren Bruels with getting her interested in working for local government during her senior year of high school.
“He found all his students jobs to learn about,” Gramentz said. “He found me a position to learn job skills in the Brown County Family Services Office. I worked half days during my senior high school year and continued there as a full-time receptionist for three years after high school.”
Gramentz said she trained under accountant Marilyn Lang and Minnesota State trooper Jim Koessler who worked part time on child support cases.
“I was about to take a social worker test when I learned that a police dispatcher, clerk, records position at the New Ulm Police Department was open and it paid more. I applied, got the job and started working there Sept. 1, 1977,” Gramentz said.
She recalled typing with a large IBM Selectric typewriter and hearing the noisy linotype machines with yellow tape with punched holes when officers requested driver’s license records and vehicle registration checks.
Gramentz said the biggest change she’s seen over the years is technological improvements.
“It was a busy job,” Gramentz said. “One person was the police radio dispatcher, clerk and records keeper, besides serving walk-in traffic and answering the phone for police and fire department calls. I worked under police chief Richard Gulden, Sgt. Chuck Raabe and clerk Alice Decker. I knew nothing about law enforcement when I began there.”
Gramentz had her share of challenges. She worked the evening shift for eight years straight so she wouldn’t have to use daycare, after her twins were born years ago.
“The police chief was glad when I offered to work the evening shift every day but Wednesday and Sunday myself. Prior to that, other personnel rotated all the night shifts,” Gramentz said.
New Ulm Police Senior Investigator Jeff Hohensee said work won’t be the same without Gramentz.
“She’s a great person. I’m going to miss her. Forty years of experience will walk about the door,” Hohensee said.
A retirement party for Gramentz will be held from 1 to 4:30 p.m. in the Brown County Law Enforcement Center basement meeting room Dec. 27.
Fritz Busch can be emailed at firstname.lastname@example.org.