Interim Financial Manager

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Glenwood Begins Process Of Replacing City Administrator

By Joe Foreman, Editor

   The city of Glenwood’s search for a full-time city administrator / financial manager could take several weeks.
    Until a full-time replacement is found for Mary Smith, who retired as city administrator earlier this month, former Emerson city clerk Michelle Faxon will serve as Glenwood’s interim financial manager on a part-time basis. Faxon will be paid $15 per hour and work three days a week for the city. Her hiring, retroactive to a Jan. 6 start date, was approved at last Tuesday’s regular meeting of the Glenwood City Council.

    Council member Susan Hirschman, a spokesperson for the council’s Public Administration Committee, said she and other council members believe Faxon is a “good fit” for the position because of her previous work experience in city government.
    “We’re confident she can fill in. She meets all the qualifications,” Hirschman said.
    Before they formally begin their search for Smith’s full-time replacement, council members plan to redefine the title and job description that goes with the position. The personnel change could also mean a restructuring of duties for other City Hall staffers and department heads.
    The council does seem receptive to the idea of soliciting public input on the job description and hiring process from Glenwood residents and business owners, but Allan Christiansen pointed out that in the end, he and fellow council members are the representatives elected to make decisions of this nature. The decision on who to hire, he added, must be made in the best interest of the residents of Glenwood.
    One member of the city council, Craig Florian, had an initial interest in applying for Smith’s vacated position. He expressed his interest in the job at a Public Administration Committee meeting on the same night that Smith’s letter of retirement was accepted. According to Hirschman, however, Florian withdrew his offer after discussing the matter with other members of the council. Florian has experience in retail management and is a former employee of the Mills County Treasurer’s Office.
    In an interview with The Opinion-Tribune, Florian said he withdrew his offer because, “I just didn’t think it would look good with her (Smith) leaving under the circumstances she did and me being the one who made the motion (to accept her letter of retirement).”
    Council members said they will take as much time as needed to find the right replacement for Smith, who worked at City Hall for over 26 years.
    “That person will have big shoes to fill,” Florian said.