Dewey Beach’s Mayor Dale Cooke Retires in Style!


Not many politicians these days are able to do what Dewey Beach Mayor Dale Cooke has done: Go out in style with the respect of the voters. Steve “Monty” Montgomery of The Starboard and Jimmy O’Conor of Woody’s Bar & Grill hosted the well-attended retirement party for Mayor Cooke last Thursday at The Starboard.

“For Jimmy O’Conor and myself to host a little Thank You Happy Hour in honor of outgoing Mayor Dale Cooke was an honor,” Montgomery said. “Having so many former mayors and commissioners all come together in thanks to the work Dale has put in was great, but to have all those folks who themselves have dedicated so many hours to helping Dewey grow in such a positive direction is what Dewey Beach is truly all about,” he added.

At least three previous town mayors attended along with commissioners, town employees and Rep. Peter Schwartzkopf who read a tribute for Mayor Cooke from the General Assembly to the enthusiastic crowd.

“Dale was very patient with me learning the process of being a town manager,” Bill Zolper told the crowd. As mayor, Zolper said, Mayor Cooke helped guide and lead him through what was expected. “I greatly appreciate that and I know on behalf of the Town of Dewey Beach we all greatly appreciate your patience, your service to this town,” he added as he presented Mayor Cooke with a framed copy of the invitation for his retirement party.

“Dewey is one of three best things in my life: my family, Dewey Beach and the Marine Corps. I wouldn’t change my life at all,” Mayor Cooke said. He added that he was proud “that things have finally calmed down and we are not in such bad financial shape. We got a good town manager, everything is going well. The commissioners are working very well together,” he pointed out. Mayor Cooke said he was pleased he helped to build bridges between commissioners and the business community and the town in general.

A small town with people volunteering their time because they love Dewey is what it is all about, Montgomery pointed out. “Dale has served Dewey in so many ways, as have so many others, at the end of the day when we can all gather and raise a glass in thanks… that’s how things should always be done in a town so near and dear to so many of us. And doing that is what drives myself and Jimmy from Woody’s to keep doing fun positive things for this community which supports each of our businesses so well,” Montgomery added.