by Graham Sturgeon, co-editor
DURAND CITY MANAGER AMY RODDY has announced that she will be retiring from the public sector in Aug. after 29 years and five months as clerk and eight years as city manager. Always on the go, the energetic and driven Roddy will take a job as a business agent with the International Brotherhood of Teamsters. She plans to stay in the Durand area, and looks forward to enjoying small community life outside the spotlight. (Independent Photo/Graham Sturgeon)
Amy Roddy announced recently that she will be retiring as Durand’s city manager and clerk after nearly 30 years serving the city. And while she says she is leaving the public sector for good, her drive and her need to be productive will not allow her to quit working all together. Roddy will stay on as city manager through August, after which she will take a job with the International Brotherhood of Teamsters labor union as a business agent. The job will provide a more relaxed setting that is less demanding of her time, while also making it possible for her to stay in her lifelong community of Durand.
In addition to her duties as the city clerk, Roddy has served as Durand’s city manager for eight years, and she also had three previous years of public service with the city of Corunna. Roddy’s new job will allow her to help in the transition of the next city manager, and she wants to make sure that the city does not miss a beat in her absence. The new city manager will need to fill Roddy’s seats on several independent commissions, including the I-69 Trade Corridor, the Greater Durand Chamber of Commerce, and the Shiawassee Economic Development Partnership (SEDP). Roddy, who has a special passion for the economic development side of her job, and will emphasize to the new city manager the importance of the city’s relationship with the SEDP so that the city does not miss out on any business opportunities due to the change. She also hopes the city council hires a replacement that is not afraid to take the calculated risks needed to continue to push the community forward.
The city has changed a lot during Roddy’s 29 years and five months of service, and she is proud of many of the accomplishments the city council has achieved during her tenure. Among the many transformative efforts of Roddy and the council, she says that she is the most proud of the revitalization and beautification of the downtown; the Trumble Park renovation, which was her first project as city manager; and the collaborative effort that brought the new veterans memorial park to the city with no out-of-pocket expense to city taxpayers.
After working for nearly three decades with the scrutiny that comes with being a city manager, Roddy said she is “excited but scared” of her future outside of the public sector. She also highlighted the work of the city council, which she called “the single-best council the city has seen for years,” in addition to the “18 phenomenal city employees that handle the day-to-day work” of keeping Durand clean and safe.
Though Roddy has been the target of some criticism over the years, most council members are going to be sad to see her go. Council member Dr. Brian Boggs said the council will have a hard time replacing Roddy, though
he added that the council intends to hire a replacement in advance of the Nov. election. Dr. Boggs knows the city will be hard pressed to find a candidate with as much of a personal stake in the community as Roddy has, but he hopes the next city manager possesses her vision, passion, and dedication.
“This city is lucky to have had Amy for 29 years,” Dr. Boggs said. “She is always looking to improve the city and her passion sets her apart. She really cares and is invested in the community. The city has accomplished so much over the past years, and Amy has had a hand in it all. This city will miss her when she is gone.”
Mayor Deb Doyle also pointed to Roddy’s passion for the community as something that will be hard to replace. “Her passion for the community and her drive to make Durand a better place will be hard to replace,” Mayor Doyle said when reached for comment. “And not only that, but the money she has brought from grants has helped the community tremendously. I know we can get another city manager, but you can’t replace the passion of someone who has lived in Durand for her whole life and will continue to do so. She is always looking for ways to improve the city.”
The Durand City Council will meet with the Michigan Municipal League (MML) in the coming week to begin to establish a candidate profile, and the MML will also work with the council to vet the candidates, in addition to helping throughout the interview and evaluation process.