UPDATED: Fridley City-Manager Search Narrows to Two

The Fridley City Council may opt interview finalists Walter (Wally) Wysopal and Michael Ericson again

Update (Thursday): City of Fridley Director of Human Resources Deborah Dahl clarified the hiring process for a new city manager in an email Thursday morning. Dahl explained that "the City Council has not decided to hold the second interviews for the City Manager's position yet. They will meet on Saturday (April 13 at 2 pm) to decide whether or not to have the 2nd interviews. Due to the advance notice requirements of Special Meetings, we had to post the meeting notice just in case they decided to meet. If they make a decision to proceed with a contract, then they will cancel the Monday meeting."

Original post (Wednesday): Two finalists for the job of Fridley city manager will return for second interviews with the Fridley City Council on April 15, 2013, according to an announcement posted at the city website Wednesday. 

The council chose Walter (Wally) Wysopal and Michael Ericson from among nine finalists they interviewed last weekend for the position vacated by William Burns, who retired as city manager at the end of 2012.

Related posts:

  • Who Are the Nine Finalists for Fridley City Manager?
  • Fridley City Council OKs 9 Finalists for City Manager Job

Here is the announcement posted Wednesday:

Fridley City Council met on Fri., April 5 and Sat., April 6 in two Special Meetings to interview nine finalists selected for the City Manager's position, vacated by Dr. William Burns who retired on Dec. 31, 2013. With the assistance of Executive Search Firm consultants Bob Slavin and David Krings from Slavin Management Consultants of Norcross, GA, the City Council narrowed the field of nine finalists to two final finalists: Walter (Wally) Wysopal and Michael Ericson.  

Both candidates have extensive experience in local government management and have held strong leadership positions within several organizations. Wysopal has been the City Manager for North St. Paul since 1998. His previous job history includes employment by the City of St. Louis Park in the following positions: Assistant City Manager for St. Louis Park, from 1993-1998; Assistant to City Manager/Personnel Officer (1988-1993); and Public Works Administrative Assistant (1986-1988). He also worked for Northfield, IL as the Assistant to Village Manager (1983-1986).

Ericson has been the Economic Development Consultant with the City of Maplewood, MN since May of 2012. His previous job history includes the following positions: City Administrator for the City of Hugo, MN (2000-2011); Assistant to the City Manager in the City of Maplewood (1998-2000), and City Manager for Watertown, MN (1992-1998).  

One hour interviews were held over the course of two days at the Fridley Municipal Center. Finalists were also given a tour of the City buildings and community amenities by department managers and City staff.

At the conclusion of the interviews, the Council considered and discussed the nine finalists. The Council unanimously narrowed the field to two finalists. The Council is expected set another Special Meeting date this week to discuss the final step in the process of selecting its top finalist.  

For questions regarding the search process, please contact:  

Deborah Dahl
Director of Human Resources
Phone: 763-572-3507
Fax: 763-502-4971
E-mail: dahld@ci.fridley.mn.us

Also posted at the City of Fridley website are two newly scheduled special council meetings to work on the city manager hiring: 

On Saturday, April 13, 2013:

NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN that there will be a special meeting of the Fridley City Council on Saturday, April 13, 2013, commencing at 2:00 p.m. for the following purposes:  

  1. Discussion and selection of top finalist for position of City Manager;  
  2. Discussion on the next steps in the City Manager selection process; and  
  3. Discussion on guidance for and authorization of the executive search firm to begin contract negotiations with top finalist for City Manager position.

On Monday, April 15, 2013:

NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN that there will be a special meeting of the Fridley City Council on Monday, April 15, 2013, commencing at 4:00 p.m. for the following purposes:  

  1. Conduct 45-minute second interviews with the two City Manager finalists;  
  2. Discussion and selection of top candidate for City Manager;  
  3. Discussion on the next steps in the selection process; and,  
  4. Discussion on guidance and authorization for the executive search firm to begin contract negotiations. 

The April 15 meeting notice also includes this caution:


Both meetings are held at the same place and are open to the public:

Said meeting will take place in Conference Room A of the Fridley Municipal Center, 6431 University Avenue N.E., Fridley, Minnesota.  

Said meeting will be open to the public. Any questions related to this item may be referred to the City Manager's Office at (763) 572-3500.  

Hearing impaired persons planning to attend who need an interpreter or other persons with disabilities who require auxiliary aids should contact the City Manager's Office as soon as possible at (763) 572-3500.


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