As the search for the next Minneapolis Park Board superintendent ramps up, residents are being asked to weigh in.
More than 80 people have applied to be the parks leader, who oversees a $110 million budget, a police force, 500 full-time employees and 6,800 acres of parkland.
Five city residents will sit on the selection committee that will help pick the top candidates, said Joelle Allen, executive recruiter at the search firm kpCompanies, which has been hired to find the Park Board's new leader.
Allen told commissioners last week that the firm has opened applications for a small selection committee. Applicants must be Minneapolis residents.
The recruiter's posting said it's looking for five people from a variety of backgrounds who can assess information gained in community listening sessions.
Selection committee members will have to sign a nondisclosure agreement to protect the privacy of the candidates who don't make it to the final round, the posting says.
Applications will be accepted through Sept. 20.
The board plans to have a new executive selected by the end of October, following Superintendent Jayne Miller's resignation earlier this year.
A list of semifinalists will be presented to an internal steering committee, which includes board President Brad Bourn, board Vice President AK Hassan, Commissioner LaTrisha Vetaw and Mary Merrill, interim superintendent. They will then narrow the group to a handful of finalists.
In October, once the finalists are named, they will be brought to Minneapolis for interviews. The search firm and the board will host a public meet-and-greet with the candidates. The official start date for the new executive will be announced later.
The search firm held 22 formal listening sessions throughout the city and several within the organization. Information gathered at the sessions will be incorporated in the questions asked during candidate interviews.
Allen told the board that the new executive should be in place by early next year.
The board appointed former superintendent Merrill as interim chief until October at a salary of $14,278 per month.