The Hillsboro City Council announced at their meeting on Tuesday that after an extensive search they have selected a new City Administrator.
“We were very happy with the way the search process worked. We had a field of outstanding and qualified candidates. At the end of the process though, it was clear to all of us that Matt Stiles rose to the top and we couldn’t be more excited to have someone of his caliber leading our team,” said Mayor Lou Thurston.
The City Council unanimously appointed Matt Stiles as its new City Administrator at the meeting.
Stiles is an ICMA credentialed manager with over 12 years of experience in public service.
He brings a wide variety of skills and experience to Hillsboro including an extensive background in financial management and economic development. Stiles has spent the last 2 years at the Public Policy and Management Center at Wichita State University as a Program Manager and instructor. Before joining WSU, Stiles served as the City Administrator in South Hutchinson, Kansas and Assistant City Manager in Bel Aire, Kansas.
“I’m actually from South Hutchinson. I grew up there. My mom and my grandparents both lived about a block from City Hall. So working there was kind of a homecoming moment. Eventually my Grandpa and my mom passed away, we had our second child and we wanted to be closer to my wife’s family so we moved to Goessel where my wife is from. I managed to get a position at Wichita State. It’s been a great job, but I’ve really been feeling the call to come back to public service. So when an opportunity like Hillsboro comes up, it felt like the perfect opportunity to get back to it,” said Stiles.
He has already visited several times and likes it.
“Hillsboro has a strong sense of community that is rare to find. Everyone has been very
welcoming and friendly,” Stiles said. “I look forward to serving the Hillsboro
community and making it our new home. Hillsboro has a lot of things going for it and a lot of challenges as well. I’m ready to roll up my sleeves and get to work.”
Hillsboro began the search for a new City Administrator after Larry Paine announced his upcoming retirement in early 2020.
“I’ve known Larry for almost 10 years now. I met him originally at a conference and I have asked him a lot of questions over the years. He’s been really good for Hillsboro. He’s also been helpful to me,” said Stiles.
Paine has served as City Administrator since 2008 and is officially set to retire on July 1. Osenbaugh Consulting of Derby conducted the search for Paine’s successor.
When the search began, no one knew the challenges all would face with COVID-19. There will be some aspects that Paine will not be able to fully prepare Stiles for, but at least Paine is sticking around and can be a resource.
“Larry has already started the budget process, and he and I have been kind of working on it back and forth and working through scenarios. Even before I’ve started, we are working on a plan so that if things go as bad as they could (because of COVID-19) we are already on it. We have to think through it all and make a lot of decisions in a real quick time frame. We don’t want to be behind,” said Stiles.
Stiles will officially begin his appointment as City Administrator on June 15. Paine and Stiles will
work together until July 1 when Paine retires.