After a search and interviews with multiple candidates, including a site visit and public interview sessions with two finalists last week, Columbia's City Council has tapped current interim city manger John Glascock to serve in the position on a permanent basis.
Glascock has been interim city manager since the resignation of long-time city manager Mike Matthes amid criticism for his views on policing, race and city employees' pay. Glascock faced co-finalist Jim Palenick, city adminstrator for Racine, Wisconsin, in a set of public interviews last week. By Thursday, Columbia Mayor Brian Treece said, Columbia's City Council had reached a consensus that Glascock was the correct choice.
"We heard that the community wanted a manager who was committed to public service and who is committed to our community," Treece said in Monday's public announcement. "Today, I'm pleased to announce that the council has found the person who, out of all the candidates we reviewed, we believe embodies all of those qualities."
Glascock said his first actions as permanent city manager will be reaching out to community members to set future priorities.
"Relationship are key to solving issues," Glascock said, "and I'm excited to forge new relationships, strengthen existing ones, and even men, the ones that may be broken."
The city currently has an interim chief of police and anticipates the retirement of Columbia Fire Chief Randy White this fall. Both positions were waiting on a permanent city manager to start the hiring process. Glascock says there is no timeline to fill these jobs yet, but they're a definite priority.