DeKALB – DeKalb City Manager Mark Biernacki announced Wednesday he plans to retire June 14, a few months after a new mayor and two new aldermen are seated.
“With the new mayor and largely a new council, I think they and the city are deserving [of] a new manager with new ideas and new energy,” Biernacki said.
Biernacki, 55, has been DeKalb’s city manager for nine years after spending a decade as the city’s community development director. His career in public service and administration spans 33 years.
His decision coming within 2nd Ward Alderman Tom Teresinski, 4th Ward Alderman Brendon Gallagher and Mayor Kris Povlsen not seeking re-election.
Biernacki said he is not leaving for another job, but plans to pursue hobbies and travel.
“I have nothing specific planned other than pursuing interests that I have long desired to do,” Biernacki said.
The new council will select an interim city manager, and then decide how to select his successor, Biernacki said.
He said he consulted the mayoral candidates on when would be the most opportune time to retire. In both his letter to Povlsen and in an interview, Biernacki said he is most proud of working with the city staff.
“They are all very strong and talented people,” Biernacki said. “They will serve well the new manager and council.”
Povlsen credited Biernacki with working with elected officials to steer the city through “the single most challenging financial time we have seen in our lifetime.”
“He made tough decisions,” Povlsen said. “He faced some serious challenges, and he led us through with his staff. He led the city to a very positive place.”
Biernacki's letter noted other accomplishments, including the revitalization of downtown DeKalb, the on-going construction of the new DeKalb Police Station and the city's financial recovery in the wake of the Great Recession.
"He has been dedicated to the community, and that has shown in his work as city manager," Povlsen said.