Nicollet County will utilize David Drown Associates, a consulting firm based in Minneapolis, to hire a new permanent county administrator and possibly a human resources director, too.

The positions became open after former County Administrator Ryan Krosch and Human Resources Director Jamie Haefner parted ways with the county in early April. Both signed separation agreements, but there was no explanation in a public setting as to why the duo was departing.

After discussion April 13, the Board of Commissioners chose to move ahead with Property Services Director Mandy Landkammer in the interim county administrator role until a permanent replacement is found. In the Human Resources Department, assistant Whitney Krebs is now handling the workload on her own.

As the April 27 meeting, the board chose to move ahead with the David Drown team on the county administrator hire process, feeling that itself and staff don’t have the necessary skill set and/or time to lead the process themselves. The cost for DDA’s services is $21,000.

The firm has extensive experience in administrator searches and is currently leading the search in Le Sueur County, among others. It proposed a five-month hire timeline with candidate recruitment starting in May, candidate screening in June, video interviews and finalists selected in July, final interviews in August and a hire in August. The chosen candidate would then be asked to begin work as the new county administrator in September.

“DDA HR uses a proven, comprehensive process ensuring clients can identify the best candidate for their organization and community,” the company’s proposal to Nicollet County said.

The Board of Commissioners has not yet decided how to hire its new Human Resources Director, but interim County Administrator Landkammer said that it might have some extra urgency, as there are two full-time positions in the Department that require filling, and Krebs is currently working alone. Commissioner Jack Kolars said the board should be looking to identify a process for a new director hire as soon as possible.

“We have to remember that two of the three people that worked in that department in the past years are not there anymore,” Kolars said. “It would seem to me that it would be good for us to consider action of appointing an individual internally as the interim … and then hire a consulting firm to help move us forward.”

DDA has offered to undertake the HR director hiring process as well, offering a reduced rate of $13,000 instead of $15,000. Commissioner Marie Dranttel said the Personnel Committee could discuss the matter at its April 29 meeting and bring a recommended process back to the board at a special meeting next week.

Reach Editor Philip Weyhe at 507-931-8579 or follow him on Twitter @EditorPhilipWeyhe. ©Copyright 2021 APG Media of Southern Minnesota. All rights reserved.

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