PALISADE, Colo. -
Since Richard Sales announced his retirement from the role of Town Administrator of Palisade, locals have wondered who will fill his shoes. Friday night, they got a chance to hear from those finalists.
“To get this person in place and to continue moving on forward like we have been is very important,” said Rodger Granat, Mayor of Palisade.
Those five candidates took the stage Friday to make their pitches to the public for the vacant Palisade Town Administrator position.
Janet Hawkinson, who took the stage first, previously served as Community Development Director and acting Town Manager of Minturn, Colorado.
“I have lived and worked in small towns with resort driven economies so I understand the benefits and impacts tourism can create,” said Hawkinson.
She says her Project Manager experience can be beneficial to things like the Palisade Plunge mountain bike trail.
Next was J. Mark Rooney who currently lives just outside of Chicago, and has previous small city admin roles in Illinois.
“I know there is probably concerns how somebody from Chicago with 40,000 sized communities would transfer back, but I would just tell the folks here, I grew up in a small town I am a country boy at heart,” said Rooney.
Rooney also says his background in the military has given him the right leadership skills for the job.
Next was Michael Segrest who worked as a local government manager in several Colorado municipalities from Boulder to Snowmass Village. He also has previous work in finance which he says can help the town economy.
“I think I have some experience and some knowledge that I can really bring here to help you truly successfully in growing that (economy) in a really thoughtful way, in a way that isn’t adversely affecting your community,” said Segrest.
Next was Mark Campbell who worked as a city admin in Missouri, and most recently as town manager of Kremmling, Colorado.
“Should I get the job, I would listen very carefully to any concerns to help the town move forward in the direction that all of you would want to go,” said Campbell.
Campbell says the $4,000,000 in grants Kremmling got under his watch shows he’s capable of doing the same in Palisade.
Last was Bill Malien, who has more than 30 years of experience as a city manager in several communities including in Missouri and Washington.
“I’m adaptable, I may not have worked in Colorado but I can learn and I work with staff to get things done, I think the issues I’ve seen with infrastructures, streets, wastewater treatment plants, Ive done those kinds of things,” said Malien.
The finalists will go though interviews with several board members, then the final choice will be made by city council sometime next week.