WINNEBAGO - After two rounds of interviews, the Winnebago City Council has extended a job offer to Chris Ziegler for the position of city administrator.
Ziegler has not yet accepted the offer.
"We're in [contract] negotiations right now, which is normal," said Mayor Randy Nowak.
Ziegler, who recently resigned as a council member, was one of three candidates interviewed Thursday evening. The others were Ray French of Eagan and Robin Leslie of Oshkosh, Wis.
All three were asked the same list of questions, with topics ranging from whether they had written grants, to how important the school was to the community, to how they handled their worst customer, to where they see Winnebago in five years.
Ziegler saw the positives of Winnebago as the school, businesses, recreational facilities such as the ball field, pool and park; and said the challenges are a declining population, an aging population, and aging infrastructure - things just about every town in the area is facing.
He wants to work on growing and adding businesses, look at a housing study from 2007 and see what can be implemented, and look into the possibility of a spec building for economic development.
"The city's been proactive in maintaining infrastructure," he said. "The next step is to bring in more businesses and make new facilities available."
Ziegler also wants to increase the population.
"The more people we can bring here, the more opportunities we have," he said.
In the end, the council unanimously approved extending an offer to Ziegler.
"We thought he was the best fit for the job," said Councilman Scott Robertson.
"He's definitely qualified with his education and everything else," said Councilman Rick Johnson.
"He wants to make sure Winnebago is still here," Nowak said.