St. Francis — Mayor CoryAnn St. Marie-Carls announced the appointment of Mark Johnsrud as the new city administrator.

Johnsrud, who started the position on Aug. 1, brings extensive municipal experience serving as the former village administrator of Johnson Creek and mayor of La Crosse.

The city held a public forum on July 14 and St. Francis residents reacted positively to Johnsrud’s friendly style and approach to municipal government.  Members of the St. Francis business community in attendance also were impressed with Johnsrud’s business and development experience.

The St. Francis Common Council recommended his hiring based on his diverse background in municipal government and experience in economic development and growth.

La Crosse experienced extensive redevelopment under Johnsrud’s tenure, including the construction of the Grand River Station transit center, a landmark building in the heart of the city’s downtown.

One resident member noted that Johnsrud was the best choice based on “his experience to grow our tax base and deal with budget challenges.” Luanne Coyne, another resident member of the interview committee, said concurred, noting a connection with his experience and the current situation in St. Francis.

“I think he is going to be a perfect fit with his past experience and our current needs," Coyne said. "I looking forward to great things from him.”

St. Marie-Carls stated that the “St. Francis economic development landscape is positively moving forward with Mark Johnsrud in place as the new administrator. The city council and I are confident that Johnsrud will help us make the necessary progress that has not been made in the past."

Johnsrud stated what attracted him to St. Francis was the friendly people.

“St. Francis truly is where your heart remains,” he said, adding that he and his wife, Tracey, are looking forward to living in St. Francis.

St. Marie-Carls said that the city used Public Administration Associates to help with the search for a new administrator.

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