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Sam Leffler … he’s all about community

Sam Leffler, who has a long, distinguished record of service to his country, is now lending his leadership skills to the Falcon area.Leffler was born in Blakesburg, Iowa, to a farming family. He attended school in a one-room country schoolhouse through the eighth grade. Overcrowding wasn’t an issue. There were only two other students in his class.High school was a little more crowded. His Blakesburg High School class numbered 19.Leffler graduated in 1957, the same year Russia launched Sputnik, an event that made a big impression on him, he said.During his junior year in high school, Leffler met Carlene Jensen, and the two married in 1959 and later produced two boys, Eric and Brian.Leffler attended Iowa State University, where he earned a bachelor’s in agriculture.He joined the U.S. Army in 1962, and spent five years in the states before the Army sent him to Germany for two years. In 1969, Leffler began his first tour of duty as a pilot in Viet Nam. He served a second tour of duty as well.Post-Viet Nam, the Army assigned Leffler to Ft. Leavenworth, Kan. He eventually went back to Iowa State University and earned a master’s degree in education. He remained on the ROTC faculty at the university until 1975, when he was assigned to Fort Carson as the 142nd signal battalion commander.Leffler’s Army career spanned the globe. He later served in the Pentagon as deputy chief of staff for operations, and then back to Germany as a U.S. Army Europe signal officer for the seventh signal brigade. From Germany, it was back to the Pentagon and then back again to Germany, where he served as the commander of more than 22,000 people scattered throughout Europe and Southeast Asia.Following his last stint in Germany, Leffler went back to the Pentagon as vice director of command, control, communications and computers for the secretary of the Army. The Army transferred Leffler to Ft. Huachuca, Ariz., where he eventually assumed duties as the commander of information systems, responsible for the Army’s worldwide communications.Leffler retired from the military after 33 years of service in August 1985. He credits his ranking and military success to his Army colleagues, to the people who worked for him and being prepared with the appropriate background for each assignment. “I just cannot say enough about the quality of people that we had in the military and that are in the military now,” he said.The Lefflers moved to Falcon in 1995, Sam Leffler became the project manager for an information technology company, and eventually a consultant for the Aleut Corp., a defense contractor based in Anchorage, Alaska. Leffler is currently the executive vice president of Aleut Management Services Company, headquartered in Colorado Springs, and operating under the parent company, Aleut Corp.He said he and his wife enjoy living in Falcon because it’s somewhat remote and a great place to enjoy their animals and hobbies. Both raise and ride horses, and share their homestead with several dogs and cats.The Lefflers also collect and restore antiques, and Sam collects old tractors and cars. Leffler is happy woodworking and refinishing furniture, too. One of his ongoing projects is constructing the frames for his wife’s paintings. When he’s not doing all of the above, he might be out hunting, perhaps moose hunting in the Arctic Circle (a recent adventure with his son and a few others).If he has any time left, Leffler participates in the Association of U.S. Army Soldier Programs at Ft. Carson and assists with candidate selection for the military academies.Leffler believes in giving back to his community. Another of his projects is the Falcon Professional Development League. He is the chairman and founding member of the FPDL, which provides the format for Falcon and area business-to-business interactions through networking and community activity.Sam has a few thoughts on community, and responsibility to community. Read on.More on Sam LefflerWhat does it take to be a good leader? Know what the job is, learn to evaluate people and pick highly qualified people. Don’t over-supervise. Check and counsel. Mentor people in the process. The worst thing is to see a subordinate fail, because then you’ve failed.What’s the best thing about Colorado or Falcon? There are so many good things: the rural atmosphere, the ability to have so many services within a reasonable distance, the climate. There’s so much to do: hiking, fishing, riding, hunting, history trips. History is every place. Anybody who doesn’t take advantage of it is missing out. And there’s great people and good neighbors.Do you have a favorite president? Ronald Reagan. I thought the world of him.How would you like to be remembered? Love of country. I’ve had the privilege of visiting lots of countries, and, well, this one just can’t be beat. I hope we all can make a contribution that will make it a little better for those who follow.How do you feel about incorporation for Falcon? I truly believe we’ve got to get plain, clear facts. There’s no way we should jump into incorporating until we’ve figured out the full spectrum of what you need to run a city. What’s the cost … how are we going to pay for it? What are the options, if we don’t incorporate? We need to take an active role in determining where we want to go. Whom do we want to control our destiny out here? County commissioners (who don’t live here) or concerned citizens who live in the area? Falcon’s going to grow residentially; we need a corresponding base of commercial growth to support the residential. We need to get a tax base so incorporating would be a minimal impact on residents. But we need to be fair and factual about it, and make decisions based on good information.

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