County clerk Larry Kestenbaum
Kestenbaum, fifty-three, is a big, affable guy with a mustache and sideburns and a broad forehead framed by large glasses. He answers questions at length, and with a professorial manner perhaps inherited from his dad, who taught American history at Michigan State. His omnivorous interests are reflected in his labor-of-love websites: politicalgraveyard.com lists vital stats of, it seems, every American who's ever held public office, while potifos.
com is devoted to his many other passions-such as folk music, elevators, octagonal houses, and names of streets. He also frequently comments on local issues on arborupdate.com.
Kestenbaum's background is as diverse as his interests: a largely self-taught computer programmer, he also holds a law degree from Wayne State, and he studied historic preservation as a grad student at Cornell. Before becoming clerk, he taught historic-preservation law at EMU and worked at the U-M's Survey Research Center.