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Crookston Times - Crookston, MN
  • UPDATE: Stassen among four to interview for City of Crookston administrator

  • Along with local Chamber and United Way leader, others who will interview Oct. 23 are Barbara Hoyhtya, Brian Heck and Andy Marquardt.
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  • Shannon Stassen is among the four applicants who will interview later this month to be the City of Crookston's next administrator.
    Interim City Administrator Pat Kelly Thursday afternoon publicly released the names of the four interviewees that the Crookston City Council, at a Ways & Means Committee meeting Wednesday, selected from an applicant pool of 10. Once all four agreed to come to Crookston to be interviewed on Wednesday, Oct. 23, Kelly released their names.
    The other interviewees are Barbara Hoyhtya of Hector, Minn., Brian Heck of Plymouth, Minn., and Andy Marquardt of Grand Forks.
    Stassen has been president/CEO of the Crookston Area Chamber of Commerce since 2011. As part of that role, he is also the executive director of the United Way of Crookston.
    Stassen, who earned his bachelors degree in education from Valley City State University in 1995, was head football coach for the University of Minnesota Crookston Golden Eagles from 1998 until 2010, when his contract was not renewed by the university.
    Since taking the Chamber and United Way helm, the Chamber and Convention & Visitors Bureau have received praise for the addition of new events and activities in Crookston and for various beautification efforts. Local lodging tax revenue for two consecutive months has broken monthly records. The local United Way chapter has set two campaign fund-raising records with Stassen as executive director.
    Hoyhtya is currently the city administrator in the Renville County, Minnesota city of Hector, which had a population of 1,151 in the 2010 census. She interviewed for the city administrator position in Tracy, Minn. in July.
    According to his Facebook page, Heck was city administrator in the eastern Twin Cities suburb of Shorewood, Minn. from June 2008 until March 2012. At that time, according to a story in the Lakeshore Weekly News, Heck and the city council in Shorewood agreed to a "separation agreement." As part of the agreement, Heck received a letter of recommendation written by the mayor that indicated Heck, during his four years in Shorewood, had presided over four annual budgets that included no levy increases, completed the city's first-ever 20-year road plan, and created a pay-for-performance compensation plan.
    According to the newspaper's story, Heck wrote in his blog that he felt tension with the city council toward the end of 2011 and that he believed some council members felt he lacked leadership and wasn't involved in the community enough.
    Heck earned his bachelors degree from Hamline University in St. Paul in 1988 and his masters in public administration from Hamline four years later. According to his LinkedIn profile, he was director of vehicle services for the State of Minnesota from Aug. 2000 to May 2004 and was city administrator in Lauderdale, Minn. from Aug. 2005 to Aug. 2008. Following his time in Shorewood, Heck was interim city administrator in Wells, Minn. from July 2012 to Oct. 2012, and was interim city administrator in Thief River Falls from Oct. 2012 to Jan. 2013. He currently lists himself as a self-employed project management and mediation consultant in Minneapolis.
    Page 2 of 2 - Marquardt, according to his LinkedIn profile, is currently a management intern for the City of East Grand Forks, where he indicates that he works with the interim city administrator and department heads on budget matters and special projects. He also currently works as a computer lab assistant at the University of North Dakota.
    Marquardt earned his bachelors degree in political science, with a minor in public administration, from UND in 2012, and states that he is on track to earn his masters degree in public administration from UND in 2014.
    The Oct. 23 interview schedule in the city hall conference room has Hoyhtya interviewing at 10 a.m., followed by Heck at 11 a.m. After lunch, Stassen will interview at 1 p.m. and Marquardt will interview at 2 p.m. The entire council, along with Mayor Dave Genereux and Kelly, will participate in the interviews.
    A public meet-and-greet with the four interviewees will be held the evening prior to the interviews. A specific time has not yet been established, but the most likely venue for the event is the Crookston Inn & Convention Center.

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