(SIOUX CITY, IA) Sioux City is now on the hunt for a permanent city manager.
Bob Padmore has been the interim manager since Paul Eckert suddenly left for a job in Mount Shasta, California. Eckert's resignation came after a former co-worker filed a sexual harassment lawsuit.
Now, three candidates are vying for the position.
It's a big job, managing Sioux City. But somebody's got to do it. Which is why three candidates born and raised in the heartland of America are hoping the city will choose them.
First up, Bob Padmore, who's been filling in as the city manager. Padmore says that's been an advantage for him.
"I'm here. I've been here for 14 years. I know the organization, I know some of the strengths, I know where we can improve, I know the people. We have a great staff in the city of Sioux City," he said.
Padmore says he's been able to tackle major hurdles and changes the city has seen over the last few months.
"We had a lot of things on our plate at the time. We're dealing with Hard Rock casino [which] was about to break down, we're heading into budget and just the unknown. That being said it was an exciting time too. I got to jump right in and do some things that I never would have imagined that I would have had the opportunity to," said Padmore.
The next candidate is Timothy Hacker. He was born and raised in Humboldt, Iowa, and recently held the position as city manager for North Las Vegas.
Hacker says dealing with and balancing budget deficits was a challenge for him at his former position but never ceased to get the job done. He hopes the city will allow him to bring even more to the table here.
"Taking on challenges, providing good, consistent, calm support for staff, able to marshal resources to effectuate a strategic plan and implement the same and achieve those goals and objectives are some things that I bring to this community," said Hacker.
And last but certainly not least, Cole O'Donnell, who's originally from Slater, Iowa.
O'Donnell has been a city administrator for 20 years and says he's had to wear many hats working for small towns which he says is a big advantage.
"Having to be a human resources director, having to be a union negotiator, having to be the finance director in those small communities, the intimate knowledge will help me be able to better relate to the department heads that now run them, be able to understand issues, be able to better serve the citizens," said O'Donnell.
The three candidates will have another round of interviews Thursday.
Each candidate spent the day in and out of interviews with members of the city council, a panel of community leaders and a panel of media representatives.
Siouxland News Anchor Larry Wentz was a member of that media panel. Each of the five members of that panel will present our impressions of the candidates strengths and weaknesses to the council.
The city has not released a specific date when a decision will be made.