OROVILLE – New Oroville Postmaster Dwight Grimmer quietly arrived in Oroville in mid-September, marking the first change in the leadership in the top spot at the P.O. for more than 25 years.
Grimmer comes to 98844 from the Yakima Valley, where he served as the Postmaster for Mabton, Wash. for the past 16 years. He takes over for Stephen Kenfield, who retired earlier this year.
The new Postmaster moved to the Oroville area with his wife Dana and they are making their home on Palmer Lake in one of two vacation houses owned by his brother. He is familiar with the area having spent vacations at Palmer Lake with his and his brother’s families over the years.
“We usually came up once or twice a year, either with my brother’s family or just with my family,” said Grimmer, who has six grown children and eight grandchildren.
“Our eighth grandchild was just born on Veteran’s Day,” he said. “I have a son in Richland, a son at BYU Idaho, a son who is a drill instructor at the Naval Base in San Diego, one son who is with Alaska Airlines out of Nome and two daughters in the Sunnyslope area.”
Grimmer has worked for the U.S. Postal Service for the last 26 years. Prior to that he worked many jobs, mostly in the commercial home repair and remodeling business as a stone mason, doing floor coverings, roofing and other small home repairs. He used these skills even after joining the Postal Service, working part time with his kids.
“I’ve slowed down quite a bit now, but when I had kids in college it really helped to have the extra jobs – my children all worked with me, even my daughters were right up there on the roof roofing with me,” said Grimmer. “If anything else, it gave them a sense of work ethic.”
Back in the Yakima Valley Dana worked as a caregiver taking care of Alzheimer patients. Now she is taking care of her father who moved up to the Okanogan with the Grimmers.
The new Postmaster says his hobbies include hunting and fishing, so this area should be good for both, especially living on Palmer Lake .
“I’ve hunted in the past, especially when I was a Postmaster in Alaska, where I first started out, but I haven’t hunted in a while. I might get back into it. I also like fishing and I like to play basketball, although it is getting harder on my old legs,” he said.
One of the reasons Grimmer and his wife chose to take the job in Oroville is because of their familiarity with the area, after coming up here for the past five or six years, he says.
“We’ve toyed with the idea of building our own house on Palmer Lake… it looks like a good place to retire,” he said.
The new Postmaster won’t be retiring for at least another five years, that’s how many he has got to go before he can take retirement. The move to Oroville shifted him up a couple of pay grades, he said.
“They look at your salary the last three years of service when determining retirement pay, so the move made sense that way as well,” he said.