Rochester City Administrator Stevan Kvenvold announces retirement
Rochester City Administrator Stevan Kvenvold, the city's highest ranking non-elected official, has announced his intention to retire next year.
Kvenvold, 73, informed colleagues of his plans in an email sent out Tuesday morning. He called it a "privilege and honor" to have served the community over the course of his 46 years in city government (37 years as administrator).
"I wish to thank all of the elected officials and city employees that I have had the honor to be associated with over the years in assisting me in carrying out my responsibilities," said Kvenvold in a letter to the mayor, council and staff.
Kvenvold plans to leave his position in the second quarter of 2017, though no formal date has been set. He told colleagues there are still a number of initiatives he would like to spend more time on before leaving.
In an email Tuesday to the Med City Beat, Kvenvold pointed to the revitalization of downtown, the flood control project and the purchase of the Chateau Theatre as some of the most significant accomplishments of his tenure.
"I am most proud of being part of a team that has provided, in my biased opinion, quality municipal services during years of rapid growth and doing so in a manner that has the City of Rochester viewed as one of the best cities in America in which to live," said Kvenvold.
As far as any advice to his eventual successor: "I would hope that he or she would have a good understanding of human behavior, be patient and as one of my former council members advised me, 'If you cannot fight or flee, flow.'"
Reached Tuesday afternoon, Council President Randy Staver said the announcement was not unexpected. He said discussions regarding Kvenvold's impending retirement have been going on for the past several months.
"I feel very blessed that Rochester has had such an outstanding city administrator who has been committed to the betterment of our city," said Staver. "While we are sad to see such a respected individual as Stevan leave his role, I also look forward to the opportunities this creates.
"Rochester continues to grow and change. None of us are in our given role forever and this creates a scenario where we can introduce new people along with new ideas and perspectives."
(Cover graphic: Med City Beat)