Francis Havey was a tough, no-nonsense chief executive when he had to be, but he led Greenfield with a fair and balanced hand.
Havey, the city’s mayor from 1980-84, who was perhaps better known as a longtime attorney and founder of Havey Fundraising Management Inc., died Sunday at the age of 83.
"He loved being the mayor to the day he died,” Havey's son, Stephen, said. "That was one thing he was really proud of, that he was mayor for two terms and that he was able to serve the people of Greenfield."
According to Stephen Havey, his father was instrumental in the construction of on 92nd Street and was a proponent of road, sidewalk and lighting projects. He also helped define the city's boundaries with signage.
"Until my dad was mayor, Greenfield didn't really have any presence," Stephen Havey said. "You never knew when you were entering or leaving the city."
Stephen Havey said his father, who lived in Greenfield more more than 50 years, earned $8,000 as mayor.
"It was supposed to be a part-time job but my dad didn’t take it as a part-time job," Stephen Havey said. "He took it very seriously. He was putting in 40 hours all the time."
Former Greenfield Police Chief Frank Springob was a lieutenant during Havey’s tenure as mayor and last saw Havey and his wife Rita at in August.
“He was good for Greenfield, in my opinion, for a lot of the stuff he did,” Springob said. “During his time as mayor, there were an awful lot of challenges. Probably not as near as great budget-wise as what Mayor (Michael) Neitzke is facing right now, but Greenfield was in a very rapid development stage during those years.
Havey, an active parishioner at St. Mary Catholic Faith Community Church in Hales Corners, was well known for his fundraising activities and in 2003 was honored for 50 years of service in the legal profession by the State Bar of Wisconsin.
Havey is survived by Rita, with whom he would have celebrated 60 years of marriage in June, six children and five grandchildren.
There will be a wake for Havey from 4-8 p.m. Friday at The funeral will be 11 a.m. Saturday at St. Mary's, following a visitation from 9-10:45 a.m.