Meridian chooses new township manager

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By Tia Graham
Meridian Times staff writer

Deliberations between township board members


Frank Walsh was selected for the position of township manager, with a very slim win over Darnell Early. Walsh, who is the current city manager of St. Joseph, impressed the board members with his preparation.

The Meridian Township council held interviews for the new township manager Saturday March 16. Gerald Richards, the current township manager, is leaving after 23 years with the township.

The candidates were:

* Darnell Early, city manager of Saginaw
* James Creech, manager of Oakland township
* Paul Brake, city manager of Grand Blanc
* Frank Walsh city manager of St. Joseph

After completing interviews at 3:30 p.m. deliberation began and almost three hours later a candidate was selected.

Frank Walsh during his interview

Frank Walsh during his interview

After his interview, Walsh said he liked the township board and would love to work with them.

Walsh also said if hired he would want to focus on an economic plan as well as customer service.

After the interviews Treasurer Julie Brixie said she was very excited about the interview process because this was her first time interviewing.

During deliberations a heated discussion about the top two candidates being Early and Walsh.

Trustee Milton Scales was a very vocal member using a baseball analogy to describe the candidates.

Scales said he selects the candidates based on the themes that they presented in their interviews.

Creech was unable to grasp a theme and just didn’t make his theme, said Scales. Brake explored themes but had no concrete experience.

When it came to Early and Walsh, Scales said that Walsh made him second guess his decision about possibly choosing Early.

Walsh won with four votes over Early’s three. After the interviews Karl Tomion, Michigan Municipal League search consultant, said he thinks they had four really good candidates had a great discussion.

“I think they picked a very well qualified candidate that I think the people of Meridian township will be very happy with said,” Tomion.

The next thing that needs to happen is a background check for Walsh.


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