Galesburg, IL (30,052) – The City of Galesburg is seeking a resourceful, visionary, and collaborative leader to become its next City Manager.  Galesburg is an independent city located in western Illinois known for its rich heritage, outstanding educational institutions, and strategic transportation resources.  It is the county seat of Knox County and serves as a regional center for commerce, culture, education, transportation, and healthcare.  Its many beautiful tree-lined neighborhoods, its vibrant historic downtown, and its wonderful public parks and open spaces contribute to the wonderful quality of life that the residents of Galesburg enjoy.  

Galesburg is home to Knox College, an outstanding four-year liberal arts school, which proudly hosted the fifth Lincoln-Douglas debate in 1858.  In fact, Knox awarded its first honorary doctorate degree to then presidential-candidate Abraham Lincoln in 1860.  Carl Sandburg College in Galesburg is a two-year community college and is named after one of the community’s favorite sons and beloved Pulitzer Prize winning American poets.   

Aside from outstanding highway transportation access provided by Interstate 74 and U.S. Highway 34, Galesburg is extremely well served with both freight and passenger rail services.  BNSF is the freight carrier that operates the Cokeville Depot and the Galesburg Rail Yard.  Galesburg is also blessed to have outstanding passenger rail service via Amtrak.  The Amtrak Zephyr provides westward service from Galesburg to the west coast.  There is also daily passenger service eastward to Chicago. 

The municipality in Galesburg operates under the Council-Manager form of government which was adopted by public referendum in 1956.  Up until 2022, the City had only three city managers over the past 25 years, all of which left the city for voluntary reasons.  However, in 2022 a city manager was hired following a nationwide search. Unfortunately, that individual left the position after just seven months on the job.  This most recent situation was clearly an anomaly for Galesburg, as the new manager was simply not a good fit for the community.  Despite this unfortunate situation, the City of Galesburg still has a long history of supporting professional municipal management. 

The City is governed by an eight (8) member City Council consisting of the Mayor, elected at-large to a four-year term, and seven (7) Council members, each of which are elected by wards to four-year overlapping terms.  The Mayor only votes in the event of a tie. 

The City’s FY23-24 annual budget totals $71.2 million including both operating and capital expenditures.  The General Fund budget is $28.1 million.   The City has 249 full-time employees distributed among the following  eight (8) operating departments: Administration, City Clerk, Community Development, Finance, Fire, Parks & Recreation, Police, and Public Works.  The City of Galesburg provides a full complement of traditional municipal services including water treatment and distribution. Sanitary sewer collection and treatment are provided by the Galesburg Sanitary District.  The City also owns and operates the Galesburg Municipal Airport which is home to the National Stearman Fly-in Days during the week of Labor Day. 

The City Manager serves as the City’s chief administrative officer and oversees all daily operations of the municipality. The City Manager serves at the direction of the Mayor and Council and is responsible for the appointment and supervision of all department heads.  The City Manager also provides professional recommendations to the City Council on all policy matters and is responsible for the successful implementation of all Council policy decisions.  The City Manager also presents a recommended annual budget to the City Council and is responsible for administering the approved budget and for the management of all of the City’s financial affairs. 

The minimum qualifications for the position include seven (7) years of progressively responsible managerial experience, preferably in a municipal organization and preferably as a City Manager/Administrator or Assistant City Manager/Administrator.  In addition, applicants should have a bachelor’s degree in public administration, business administration, urban planning, or some other related field of study.  An advanced degree, such as a master’s degree in public administration, is desirable but not required.  

In addition to the minimum qualifications outlined above, strong applicants for the position will possess a thorough working knowledge of most aspects of a full-service municipal operation, as well as strong interpersonal and communication skills.  The City Council hopes to attract candidates for the City Manager position with the following leadership traits and professional skills: 

  • Exceptional leadership attributes including integrity, vision, empathy, passion, maturity, and humility. 
  • Empowering leader that enhances the current team culture that exists within the organization and inspires all staff to excel.
  • Can create an aspirational vision for Galesburg.
  • Committed to the principles of diversity, equity, and inclusion both in the workplace and in the community. 
  • Experience in development and redevelopment initiatives, both residential and commercial, including the application of various municipal development tools such as TIF, enterprise zone, tax rebates, job training, monetary grants, etc.
  • Plays an active and visible role in the community beyond what is required by his or her municipal duties. 
  • Builds effective relationships with City Council, staff, community organizations, citizens, and all other stakeholders by consistently demonstrating honesty, dedication, respect, sincerity, and trust. 
  • Talented problem-solver who can develop out of the box recommendations, based upon thorough and objective analysis, to the governing body to address challenges and opportunities. 
  • Formulates policy recommendations to the City Council based upon thorough study and professional analysis, and advocates for positions that the city manager believes are in the best interest of the community irrespective of the popularity of such recommendations.   
  • Committed to the principles of diversity, equity, and inclusion both in the workplace and in the community. 
  • An outstanding communicator that places a high priority on transparency.
  • Committed to the principles of diversity, equity, and inclusivity both in the workplace and in the community. 
  • Has strong technical/professional skills in the following areas
    • Economic development 
    • Financial management & budgeting
    • Community relations and engagement
    • Growth management
    • Environmental sustainability
    • Strategic planning
  • A commitment to strictly adhere to the ICMA Code of Ethics.
The starting salary range for this position is $165,000 to $180,000 DOQ/E. The City also provides an excellent package of fringe benefits including relocation assistance. The City requires residency within the corporate limits of Galesburg within six (6) months of appointment.  

Interested candidates should apply online by 5:00 pm on August 28, 2023, with resume, cover letter, and contact information for five (5) work related references to the attention of Mark R. Peterson, Vice President, GovHR USA.  On-line application submittals are required. Please direct all questions about the position to Mr. Peterson at (309) 825-5091.  The City of Galesburg is an Equal Opportunity Employer. 

Application Deadline: August 28,2023

Posted: 2023-08-03

To apply for this job please visit

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