Meeker Rec. Center interviews two finalists

MEEKER — And then there was one.
Or, at least, there will be soon.
Joe Nieslanik, president of the board of directors of the Eastern Rio Blanco Metropolitan Recreation and Park District, said he expects a job offer will be made by the end of the week to hire a new executive director.
On Monday, the interviewing committee met with two finalists for the position. A third candidate — Philip Moya of Greeley — withdrew his name from consideration over the weekend. Each interview lasted about an hour.
“They went well,” Nieslanik said of Monday’s interviews with Scott Pierson of Sainte Genevieve, Mo., and Zach Clatterbaugh, who recently moved to Meeker from Kemmerer, Wyo. “Now we’ll take some time to figure out what we want to do and go from there. The interviewing committee will make a recommendation to the board. I would hope we would make an offer by the end of the week. That’s our goal.”
Nieslanik said he was sorry Moya backed out.
“He just indicated that due to the potential salary structure and the cost of living, he wasn’t sure it was enough of an advancement to make it worthwhile,” Nieslanik said.
Moya is the recreation programs manager for the city of Greeley.
“You’re always disappointed when a qualified candidate removes himself from the process,” Nieslanik said. “But it’s fairly indicative of the times in western Colorado, where the cost of living is on the rise.”
While Nieslanik expects a job offer to be extended soon, he doesn’t expect an answer right away.
“I would be surprised if we know something by the end of the week,” he said.
The board hopes to have a new executive director in place by the middle of July. Former executive director Heidi Hoffman Ham resigned in May. She is now the executive director of the Downtown Development Authority in Grand Junction. She was executive director of the rec. center for five years.
“She will be missed,” Nieslanik said of Ham. “She was an excellent director. Heidi just did a terrific job.”
However, the role of the new director will be different.
“The scope of the directorship has changed over the last five years, just in the sense of the (new) center,” Nieslanik said. “Prior to that, we had very few employees. Most of what we did was programming and youth sports. Now we have this big facility to run.”