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Brent Trout to leave Mason City for Topeka, Kansas

Brent Trout

TOPEKA, KANSAS – It was announced today that Mason City City Administrator Brent Trout was approved as the next city manager of Topeka. He will have a starting salary of $195,000, the Topeka Capital-Journal reports.

Strategic Government Resources (SGR), a local government executive search firm based in Keller, Texas, was selected to conduct the nationwide city manager search. SGR’s recruitment and vetting process produced an impressive field of candidates, with the city receiving 28 applications from candidates in 17 states.

Trout will lead day-to-day city operations starting Oct. 30, cjonline.com says:

Trout’s three year contract includes a city-owned vehicle, 15 days of vacation and up to $15,000 to cover moving expenses. If temporary housing is needed, the city will pay a one time supplement of up to $3,000. The contract also stipulates that Trout will maintain a primary residency in Topeka.

Brent Trout has 25 years of city administration experience and currently serves as the city administrator and city clerk for the city of Mason City, Iowa, a position he has held since 2007. He previously served as city administrator and city clerk for the cities of Boone, Eagle Grove, and Bancroft, Iowa. He has also served in the Iowa Army National Guard, with over 29 years of service, retiring as a Lieutenant Colonel in 2015. Trout earned a master’s and bachelor’s degree in public administration from Drake University and is an ICMA credential manager. Also, Trout was born and raised in the Kansas City area. He graduated from Blue Springs High School.

Topeka, Kansas, has a population of over 127,000 and is 50 miles west of Kansas City.

The debate in Mason City will now open on searching for Trout’s replacement.  Who will pick from a potential list of candidates – the current city council and mayor, or a “new” council and mayor to be seated in 2018?  There are also whispers that Mason City needs to scrap the position altogether, after it was revealed how easily the person holding the job can become a puppet of the mayor and other “connected” individuals in town instead of answering to the city council. Some are saying a “strong mayor” would be better for the community and save tens of thousands of dollars in salary.  More to come on this issue.

NIT wishes Mr. Trout all the best in Topeka.

From Topeka.org:

Brent D. Trout has been selected by the City of Topeka’s Governing Body as the next City Manager. Earlier today the Governing Body unanimously approved an employment agreement with an initial three-year term. Trout’s annual base salary will be $195,000. Trout and his wife will establish their primary residence in Topeka.

“I am delighted Mr. Trout will be joining the City of Topeka,” Mayor Wolgast stated. “He has outstanding credentials and I look forward to his becoming a leader of our City government and in the community. The Governing Body appreciated his leadership style as a city administrator and in his military experience.”

“I am excited about working with the City of Topeka and its citizens,” said Mr. Trout. “I look forward to helping the City meet its goals, getting to know the people, and participating in all aspects of the community.”

Trout comes to Topeka from Mason City, Iowa where he has served as the City Administrator since 2007. Trout has more than 25 years’ experience as City Administrator and has served the role for the Iowa cities of: Boone, Eagle Grove and Bancroft prior to Mason City. During his tenure with Mason City, Trout was instrumental in securing grant funding for downtown projects and overseeing renovations of the public library and renovation of a downtown five-block streetscape project. Additionally, Trout has an extensive military background, having served for 29 years in the Iowa Army National Guard, from which he retired in 2015 with a final rank of Lieutenant Colonel. Trout holds both a Master’s and Bachelor’s Degree in Public Administration from Drake University. He has achieved credentialed status in the International City Managers Association and served as Board President of the Iowa City Managers Association.

Trout will assume the Topeka City Manager position on October 30, 2017.

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