First Selectman Lynne Vanderslice has announced Department of Public Works Director Tom Thurkettle will retire effective Sept. 1. "Tom has been a valuable part of the fabric of the town for more than 35 years," she said in a statement. "His handprint is on much of the growth and changes seen during those years. Many of us, including the eight first selectmen with whom he has served, \u00a0have benefited from his knowledge and the vast history he keeps stored in his brain." \u00a0 Human Resources Director Sarah Taffel will work with the Board of Selectmen to develop a plan for selecting his replacement, Vanderslice said. "In the meantime, with such a strong and talented DPW staff, I am confident things will proceed smoothly until a replacement can be found," she added. "No question, Tom leaves big shoes to fill."