Kandiyohi County hires firm to search for new administrator

DDA Human Resources Inc., a David Drown Associates company, has been hired to run the national search for a new Kandiyohi County administrator. Current Administrator Larry Kleindl is planning on retiring in February.

Kandiyohi County Administrator Larry Kleindl has announced his intention to retire. He told the Kandiyohi County Board on Tuesday, May 3, 2022 he plans to leave his post in February 2023.
Kandiyohi County Administrator Larry Kleindl has announced his intention to retire in February 2023. A search firm, DDA, has been hired by the county to lead the search for his replacement.
Shelby Lindrud / West Central Tribune
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WILLMAR — The search for a new Kandiyohi County administrator has begun. At Tuesday's meeting, the Kandiyohi County Board hired DDA Human Resources Inc., a David Drown Associates company, to lead the hunt for the new administrator.

"There are a lot of good things to be said for them," said Commissioner Rollie Nissen.

DDA was one of three firms to return proposals to the county regarding the job. The other two were Baker Tilly and GovHR. While County Human Resources Director Connie Mort and members of the board felt any of the firms would be able to do the search, DDA rose to the top.

"Being a local company, they know the landscape," said Commissioner Roger Imdieke, of the Minnesota-based DDA. "They probably are going to know a lot of the prospects."

DDA has been in the local government search business for nine years and in the past two years has done 42 such searches in Minnesota, 13 of them for county administrators, Mort said.


As part of their search services, DDA will gather information about the position, create a position profile, comprehensively advertise and reach out to prospective candidates, select semifinalists following a review and ranking of applicants and do a video interview with semifinalists.

"They will offer finalists for your approval," Mort said.

The company will also complete all the background and reference checks and administer an intellect profile to measure each finalist's verbal reasoning, mathematical and logical reasoning skills. The County Board will then interview the finalists and decide to whom to offer the job.

According to DDA's timeline, an offer could be made to a finalist by the end of September, with the new administrator in place by November, if all goes to plan. That would give the new person a few months to shadow current Administrator Larry Kleindl, who plans to retire in February.

DDA is charging the county $22,000 for the search process, payable on completion. They were the lowest cost option of the three.

One of the points about DDA that stood out to the commissioners was its two-year guarantee. If the new administrator leaves the position within two years, DDA will redo the search for free. They also reach out to the new administrator a year after their hiring, to see how everything is going.

"I thought that was a neat thing," Mort said.

The motion to hire DDA was unanimous. The board is hopeful the firm will be able to find a new administrator that will fit the needs of Kandiyohi County.


"We need an administrator that is going to understand and be supportive of that diversity" of the county, said Commissioner Steve Gardner.

More Kandiyohi County Board:
With the help of state and federal funds, homes and businesses in Lake Elizabeth, East Lake Lillian and Harrison townships in Kandiyohi County could have broadband connections within two years.

Shelby Lindrud is a reporter with the West Central Tribune of Willmar. Her focus areas are arts and entertainment, agriculture, features writing and the Kandiyohi County Board.

She can be reached via email or direct 320-214-4373.

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