The city of Helena has announced the three finalists to become the next permanent city manager.
The finalists are Colorado state deputy director of local government Rachel Harlow-Schalk; Texarkana, Arkansas, city manager Kenneth Haskin and Commerce City, Colorado, deputy city manager Troy Smith.
The three candidates will travel to Helena for the final phase of the hiring process Aug. 14 and 15. They will tour the city and participate in interviews with city staff, a panel of community stakeholders and, finally, the Helena City Commission.
Concerns about COVID-19 have limited the public events that can be held with the city manager candidates. In a release Monday, city leaders encouraged residents to watch the commission’s interviews with the finalists online. More information on how to view the interviews will be released later.
The city is seeking a permanent replacement for former city manager Ana Cortez, who left her position in February. Melinda Reed is currently serving as the interim city manager.
The city and its consultant, the Novak Consulting Group, report 94 people applied for the position. The city commission chose five for initial interviews by videoconference. They conducted four interviews last Monday and Tuesday – after one candidate dropped out – then held deliberations Friday on which candidates they would keep considering.