City fills finance position

Rolan was CFO, consultant for city of Columbia, S.C.

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— The city of Steamboat Springs announced Thursday that it has chosen Lisa Rolan as its new director of financial services. Rolan comes from Columbia, S.C., where she served as the city's chief financial officer and later as a financial consultant to the city.

"I'm the big winner," said Rolan, who starts March 3. "I'm looking forward to coming out there and starting. It's going to be really fun and challenging."

Rolan will fill a position that has been open since former finance director Don Taylor was let go in July 2007. City Manager Alan Lanning said Rolan's hiring is welcome news for a finance department that has been in limbo for several months.

"It's always nice to have a complete staff," Lanning said.

Assistant Finance Director Bob Litzau led the finance department on an interim basis.

"Bob Litzau has done just an amazing job over there," Lanning said.

While she described her new position as challenging, Rolan faced plenty of challenges at her old job in Columbia, a city with an estimated population of 117,394. Rolan said she started with that city at a time when its finances were in shambles and a city employee had just been caught embezzling.

"I walked into a pretty big mess," Rolan said.

Rolan is married and has two children. She said her family always has visited Colorado and Montana and is happy to set up here permanently.

"My kids and family and I have wanted to get back that way for a long time," Rolan said.

While Steamboat is in much better financial shape than Columbia was when Rolan started with that city, there is work that needs to be done. Officials have noted in recent weeks the state of Steamboat's available reserves, which as of last week had dipped all the way to $3 million. Rolan discussed those reserves while in Steamboat for her interview, and she said she is confident in her ability to bolster them.

"The one good thing I have, is I have a lot of investment abilities, so I can rebuild those reserves," Rolan said. "My ability to build and foster relationships with the banking community will help the city of Steamboat build those reserves."

Before working in Columbia, Rolan was the finance director in Destin, Fla. She has master's degrees in business administration and health administration from Pfeiffer University in N.C. and a bachelor's in accounting from North Carolina Wesleyan College, in addition to various certifications.

Along with her professional credentials, Lanning said Rolan's personality also will be welcome in City Hall.

"Her personality is going to be really outstanding," Lanning said. "She's going to be infectious. Everybody will be really happy with her."

- To reach Brandon Gee, call 871-4210

or e-mail bgee@steamboatpilot.com

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