Residents will help pick city manager

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Marcia Nelesen
Saturday, July 27, 2013

JANESVILLE--Acting Janesville City Manager Jay Winzenz has applied for the job of city manager.

Meanwhile, council President Kathy Voskuil has formed an 11-member committee of residents to interview candidates and give input to the council.

Members of the Ad Hoc City Manager Recruitment Advisory Committee are:

--Kay Dupree, representing neighborhoods.

--Mark Bush, chairman of Data Dimensions.

--Lisa Furseth, executive director of Community Action.

--David Cullen, CEO of JP Cullen & Sons.

--Ed Madere, retired city manager.

--Steve Kennedy, vice president Rock Road.

--Dave Riemer, owner of Harris Ace Hardware.

--Joe Pregont, president and CEO of Prent.

--Larry Squire, regional president of Johnson Bank.

--Kristin Fillhouer, assistant dean at UW-Rock County.

--Jeff Helgesen, president of Helgesen Development.

Voskuil wrote in a letter to committee members: “The city council and I highly value community engagement and (we believe) involving a representational cross section of business and community leaders in a consultative process will meaningfully assist the council to make better decisions to address and respond to the needs and concerns now and into the future for the city of Janesville.”

Candidate binders will be delivered Thursday, Aug. 8 to the human resources director's office by Voorhees Associates, which is leading the manager's search. Council members will consider the applications Tuesday, Aug. 13.

The committee of residents will interview candidates and meet with the council from 7:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. Friday, Aug. 23.

The committee interviews are open to the public.

A community reception with the candidates will be held at Rotary Gardens from 5:30 to 7 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 22. The candidates and their spouses will have dinner with council members after the reception.

The council will interview candidates Friday, Aug. 23, and, if needed, Saturday, Aug. 24.

Winzenz has been acting city manager since Eric Levitt left in May. Winzenz also was acting city manager after City Manager Steve Sheiffer retired and before Levitt was hired. But then Winzenz decided against seeking the job.

“I knew at that time that I had a desire to be the city manager but the time had to be right,” Winzenz said. “The timing was right to bring somebody in from the outside.”

Winzenz noted he's spent nearly five years working with Levitt, who named Winzenz assistant city manager. Levitt “gave me an opportunity to continue to grow and develop with the organization,” Winzenz said.

Now, with his children older, “I feel that the time is right, that the organization is in the place where I feel comfortable taking the reins,” he said.

“We have a lot of good things going on,” Winzenz said.

“I'd like to continue that.”

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