Moffat County's planning director, Minturn's human resources director and a former city manager from Michigan are the three finalists for the Hayden town manager position.
The Hayden Town Board interviewed three finalists for Hayden's open town manager position Saturday, with the application review committee also providing feedback.
"We were real pleased with the candidates," Mayor Chuck Grobe said, acknowledging that all three are highly qualified. "It's hard to look at a resume and equate that to the person and what the person is made up of."
The town should be prepared to make an offer by Feb. 9, Grobe said. During the time up until then, the town board and other staff members will be further evaluating the candidates.
The Hayden Town Board will further evaluate the three finalists' qualifications at a public meeting at 7 p.m. Thursday at Hayden Town Hall. After general discussion, the board will go into executive session to further discuss the candidates in private, and possibly, another elimination could be made, Hayden Town Clerk Lisa Johnston said.
Also at the meeting, trustees will be appointed to make calls to the candidates' listed references to report at the next meeting, Johnston said.
Susan L. Graler
Finalist Susan L. Graler has been Moffat County planning director since November 2000. In that position, she coordinated department activities for Moffat County's 13,000 residents. There, her responsibilities included long- and short-range planning, budget development, administration of zoning and subdivision regulations and associated requirements, coordination of public hearings and meetings, compilation of planning data and development of reports for the Moffat County Commissioners and Moffat County Planning Commission.
Before taking the position in Craig, Graler worked as a geographic information system analyst and tax map assistant in Ohio. After graduating from Miami University with a degree in Urban and Regional Planning, she held several positions ranging from assistant zoning inspector to collections supervisor.
While working as Moffat County's planning director, she also is obtaining her master's degree in public administration at the University of Colorado in Denver. She began coursework in September 2003.
Graler would like to use her planning expertise to help the town with the many development issues facing it, while also branching out into the wider realm of public administration, she said.
"I've been in the planning field and done that type of work and I've determined I enjoy the administrative side more," she said. "This is a great opportunity."
The second finalist, Minturn resident Russell Martin, wrote in his application letter that he is not applying for a position anywhere else because he loves the Hayden area and believes he has the necessary expertise and experience for the job.
He gained some experience before his professional career began. He has seen the growth Hayden is facing in his own hometown, Johnstown.
"It went from hardly having a hardware store to having a McDonalds," Martin said.
Seeing his small town change before his eyes helps his perspective in all the towns he has worked in in previous years, he said.
"Hayden looks like places that I've worked in for the last six and a half years," he said. "I've worked for several communities from small to big, and worked with the towns developers to mediate problems."
Martin has a master's degree in social science in human resource management from Utah State University and a bachelor's degree in city and regional planning. From what he learned, his career began with him being a regional planner in Richfield, Utah for three years. As regional planner, he collected, organized and analyzed data in the development of local plans and ordinances.
From Utah, Martin moved to be a human resource director in Red Cliff and currently Minturn, a bedroom community of Vail that is home to about 1,000 residents. As human resource director, Martin performs all duties associated with the planning and development process including pre-application conferences, scheduling, application assistance, ordinance explanation and clarification, planning commission and town council meeting packet preparation, staff reports and presentations and GIS mapping development.
The third finalist, Perry Franzoi, is the only finalist with experience as an actual city manager. From November 2000 to April 2003, Franzoi was the city manager of Iron Mountain, Mich., a city of 18,400 people about 100 miles north of Green Bay.
As city manager, Franzoi already has dealt with many tasks he would face in Hayden.
In Michigan, he administered operations of the city police, fire, public works, administrative departments of the city clerk, finance department, assessor and zoning. Working in direct relationship to the city council, he assisted in the development of the town's first comprehensive master plan, worked on a downtown revitalization project and capital projects, and wrote successful grant applications, including one that secured lighting for the city's cross country ski trail.
Franzoi also has served as city manager of Munising, Mich. and Saugatuck, Mich. He has 20 years of experience in local government, 15 of which he has been chief administrative officer. Franzoi has a bachelor's and a master's in public administration.
He could not be reached for comment.