Council selects interim manager

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Veteran deputy city manager Wendy DuBord was selected Tuesday to serve as Steamboat Springs' interim city manager.

The Steamboat Springs City Council voted 6-1 on Tuesday to make DuBord the interim manager. DuBord, a city employee since 1993, has been deputy city manager since 1998.

Earlier this month, the council voted to terminate the contract of City Manager Paul Hughes, effective Saturday. In November, Hughes had announced plans to retire.

The council has selected executive search firm Peckham & McKenney to look for and narrow down candidates for the city manager position. DuBord will serve as city manager until the council chooses Hughes' permanent replacement.

To select the interim manager, the council met Tuesday and interviewed three candidates: DuBord, Financial Services Director Don Taylor and Transit and Transportation Services Director George Krawzoff. Each candidate answered a series of identical questions from council members.

DuBord said she has a strong understanding of the issues Hughes has faced as manager; the two have met weekly throughout Hughes' tenure. She also said she was a qualified candidate because she has strong communication and organization skills and works well with others.

DuBord also described herself as "inclusive" because she thinks the council's and city staff's actions should be public.

When asked whether she was prepared to manage other staffers, DuBord told council members she has served as city manager during Hughes' vacations.

"I'm comfortable in that role; it's something I've already been doing," she said.

DuBord said she supports having the council and the city manager engage in more conversations and be more open with their communication.

"I don't think we get to know each other very well," she said.

DuBord's goals include providing better training in customer service for city staff. She also wants to realign what she called a "perception issue" regarding the public's opinion of city services. The city is recognized regionally and statewide for its success, she said, and she wants to see that recognition at the local level.

After the interviews, the council went into a 30-minute executive session, or private meeting, to discuss the candidates. After the session, they voted by secret paper ballot.

City Council President Ken Brenner said the executive session took 30 minutes because all three candidates were well-qualified.

After the meeting, DuBord said she looked forward to continue to serve the community.

"I'm just honored to be selected and proud to be put in this position of trust," she said.

-- To reach Dana Strongin, call 871-4229 or e-mail dstrongin@steamboatpilot.com

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