WEST FARGO — A West Fargo hiring committee has nailed down its top choice for the city’s next finance director after interviewing three finalists for the position left vacant after Judy Afdahl resigned April 7 less than a year into the job.
City Communications Specialist Rachel Richter Lordemann said the city received 14 applications for the position, of which the city interviewed three: Brian Majeski, Heidi Delorme and Eric Carlson.
Carlson lives in West Fargo and was most recently a chief financial officer for Cornerstone Bank. He also served in that role for 15 years at Alerus Financial Corporation. Carlson holds a bachelor’s and master’s degree from North Dakota State University.
A current director of finance and administration with the United Way of Cass Clay, Delorme also served in various financial-related positions for the state of North Dakota. Delorme served two terms on the Bismarck School Board including as president and vice president.
The only out-of-state candidate, Majeski currently acts as assistant director for the Iowa Department of Aging, as well as an Iowa-licensed attorney in good standing. Majeski received a bachelor’s degree from the University of Minnesota Duluth and earned his juris doctorate at Drake University in Iowa.
After interviews concluded Wednesday, May 10, Lordemann said the committee has identified one candidate to extend an offer of employment to. That candidate will be discussed at the full West Fargo City Commission meeting on Monday, May 15.
The hiring committee is comprised of:
- Mayor Bernie Dardis
- City Commissioner Roben Anderson
- Assistant City Administrator Dustin Scott
- Human Resources Representative Nathan Skalsky
- Fire Chief Dan Fuller
- Police Chief Denis Otterness
- Public Works Director Matt Andvik
- City Assessor Nick Lee
The finance director position is one of five city department head seats vacant since March. Afdahl alerted the city she would be leaving in January and then resigned in April.
City Administrator Tina Fisk
abruptly resigned March 15
, followed by
Human Resources Director Jenna Wilm
Communications Director Melissa Richard
in late April.
Technology Director Dustin Roberts also resigned in March, while Library Director Betty Adams resigned in March, but will be working through mid-May. Library staffing issues are primarily handled by the West Fargo Library Board, which includes one city commissioner.
Three finance department employees were also fired earlier this year, and the city has since entered into a
contract with an outside firm
to provide the city with financial services for three months at a total cost of $144,000 due to the financial department’s current skeletal staff.
Earlier this year, city officials discovered widespread billing mistakes of city-provided utilities, such as water and sewer service. The mistakes resulted in a loss of at
least $1.25 million in taxpayer money,
according to a recent Forum analysis of public records.
Wendy Reuer covers all things West Fargo for The Forum.