FORT WALTON BEACH — Okaloosa County commissioners have chosen a Palm Beach County company to conduct a national search to hire the next county administrator.
The county will pay the firm, Colin Baenziger & Associates, a fee of $21,500 to advertise the job, recruit candidates nationwide and narrow that group to a smaller number of finalists.
The company was one of six that submitted proposals to the county.
“They were all reputable, high-quality firms,” county Human Resources Director Kay Godwin said. “(Colin Baenziger & Associates has) done a lot of executive recruitment for the public sector. … Their methodology was right on target and something that I thought would work well for us.”
Godwin said she also was impressed with the company’s 45 percent minority placement rating.
Colin Baenziger & Associates will begin in the next few weeks by conducting one-on-one interviews with county commissioners about what they want in an administrator.
“The first step will be for them to gather information about our community,” Godwin said.
After developing a job description, the company will advertise on multiple national platforms. She estimated that the entire search could take 90 days to four months to complete.
“We really want to have a decision by May so that person can come to work and be part of the budget process,” Godwin said.
County Administrator Jim Curry, who will retire by the end of October 2013, has said he would like to walk his successor through the 2013-14 budget development process.
Curry, who has worked for the county for 35 years, entered the Florida Deferred Retirement Option Program, or DROP, in 2008. Under state rules, he must leave his post within five years of entering the program.
Curry was hired as an Okaloosa County corrections officer in 1978. Three years later, he was named director of the Corrections Department and served in that position until 1997. Curry served in the county’s No. 2 position from 1997 until 2005, when he became county administrator.
Contact Daily News Staff Writer Kari Barlow at 850-315-4438 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow her on Twitter @KariBnwfdn.