Updated: City Administrator Candidate Tells Waukesha 'No'
Waukesha mayor was hoping to have candidate's contract approved June 26.
The selection committee tasked with finding the next city administrator is at a crossroads, according to a Milwaukee Journal Sentinel article.
The top candidate, Shawn Gillen, has turned down a job offer from the committee, the article states. Four candidates were announced last week. The committee doesn’t have an agreement about the remaining three candidates, according to Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.
Gillen was the unanimous pick by the committee, according to Acting City Administrator Steve Crandell.
Alderwoman Joan Francoeur told Patch that recruiters working with the city informed the committee Gillen declined the position because of his family and a financial clause in his current contract if he were to not fulfil his full term on the contract.
The committee will have to meet and determine the next steps, Francoeur told Patch.
Mayor Jeff Scrima told Waukesha Patch last week that he hoped his recommendation would go to the Common Council on June 26.
The finalists were:
- Gillen, city administrator in Grand Rapids, MN.
- Kenneth Witt, city administer in Sparta.
- Aaron Oppenheimer, village administrator in Bellevue.
- Thomas Barwin, past village administrator in Oak Park, IL.
Barwin unexpectedly, and somewhat mysteriously, resigned from the Oak Park job back in February. The Oak Park Village Board declined to say if they'd forced him out. Still, he was gone nine days after making the sudden announcement.
At the time, Barwin told Patch he was exploring options in the private sector and nonprofit world, areas where policy decisions and action happen more quickly than in civic government — which he likened to “running with a parachute.”
Barwin’s also a candidate for a job in Sarasota, FL.
Former City Administrator Lori Luther resigned from her position in Waukesha to take a county administrator position in Illinois. She had a tumultuous relationship with Scrima at the time, although her last employee review by the council was positive. Then-Council President Paul Ybarra said Luther “substantially exceeded expectations.”