Traverse City Record-Eagle

Latest News - Mobile

May 11, 2013

City manager candidate interviews set for today

TRAVERSE CITY — Traverse City commissioners will publicly interview six candidates for the city’s top administrator job today.

Traverse City Mayor Michael Estes hopes commissioners can select a new city manager by the time current Manager Ben Bifoss retires June 28.

Estes said commissioners are looking for several qualities in the ideal candidate, such as past experience as a city manager, and a background that includes a familiarity with publicly owned utilities and collective bargaining.

An ideal candidate also will understand the distinct roles of the city commission and the city manager in municipal governance, Estes said, adding that no one aspect of a candidate’s background or experience will be a deal-breaker.

”It’s got to become very clear to the candidate that we want someone who understands the difference between administration and policy,” Estes said.

Commission members previously thinned a pool of 55 applicants to 11. Six of those candidates will be interviewed today.

Traverse City Commissioner Jim Carruthers said commission members will try to ask each candidate roughly the same questions as they gauge their fit for the city manager position.

”It’s not an easy job, and it’s hard to pick someone off a piece of paper or resume,” Carruthers said. “But I think the interviews will help (fill) that out.”

Estes said each commissioner will rank their top three choices after the interviews. He said a few candidates usually rise to the surface, and one could even receive top rankings from each commissioner.

”If that does happen, we’d be hard-pressed not to offer a contract to that person,” Estes said.

Candidates include: Jered Ottenwess, city manager for the City of Ishpeming; Vance Ishler, county administrator of Allegany County, Md.; Dan Wietecha, city manager Evansville, Wis.; Robert Anderson Jr., director of planning and development for the City of Detroit; William J. Cooper, former city manager for the cities of Hamtramck and Mount Clemens, and Richard A. Douglas, town manager for Selma, N.C.

A seventh anonymous candidate declined an invitation for an interview.


The candidates

Candidates for the city manager job will be interviewed today at the Boardman Avenue Governmental Center in the following order:

- 9:05 a.m. — Richard Douglas

- 10:05 a.m. — William Cooper

- 11:05 a.m. — Dan Wietecha

- 12:30 p.m. — Vance Ishler

- 1:30 p.m. — Jered Ottenwess

- 2:30 p.m. — Robert Anderson, Jr

Text Only

Twitter Updates
Follow us on twitter
Associated Press Video
GMA: Dog passes out from excitment to see owner Robin Wright Can Dance! (WATCH) She's Back! See Paris Hilton's New Carl's Jr. Ad Morgan Freeman Sucks Down Helium on 'Tonight Show' Raw: Sea Turtle Hatchlings Emerge From Nest Baseball Hall of Famers Inducted Big Weekend For Atlanta Braves In Cooperstown - @TheBuzzeronFox Chapter Two: Becoming a first-time director What's Got Jack Black Freaking Out at Comic-Con? Doctors Remove 232 Teeth From Teen's Mouth Bradley Cooper Explains His Voice in 'Guardians of the Galaxy' Deja vu: Another NYPD officer choke-holding a suspect 'Fifty Shades of Grey': Watch the Super Sexy First Trailer Now! Reports: Ravens RB Ray Rice Suspended For 1st 2 Games Of The Season Air Algerie plane with 119 on board missing over Mali Diamond Stone, Malik Newman, Josh Jackson and others showcase talent Free Arturo - The World's Saddest Polar Bear A Look Back at Batman On Film Through The Years LeBron James -- Dropped $2k On Cupcake Apology ... Proceeds To Benefit Charity Snoop Dogg Says He Smoked Weed at the White House