What's News in Pleasant Prairie, Wisconsin

Public Works Director
As part of a plan to internally consolidate utilities and other public works services, earlier this year, Pleasant Prairie began a search for a qualified candidate to fill the newly created Director of Public Works position. The new Director will oversee Village services related to drinking water, sanitary sewer, storm water management, parks and streets, enabling more efficient cross-use of staff, equipment and other resources. A panel of three independent interviewers, from Wisconsin communities, identified John Steinbrink Jr., currently the Superintendent of Parks and Streets for the Village, as the most qualified candidate for the new Director of Public Works position.

Conducting the interviews were: David Botts, P.E., Public Works Director for the City of Beloit; Tom Lebak, Village Administrator for the Village of Caledonia; and Michael Pertmer, Public Works Director for City of West Allis. Interviews were conducted based on a long list of criteria identified in the newly created job description. Requirements ranged from college degrees and a technical certification to practical job experience demonstrating the ability to actually perform work related tasks such as operating machinery. The position was posted over a period of nine weeks in various locations, including: the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, JSOnline.com, Jobs TV, JobNoggin.com, Monster.com, American Public Works Association WorkZone and PleasantPrairieOnline.com.

A total of 16 candidates responded to the posting. Interviews were conducted for the two final candidates who met the criteria outlined in the posting. The panel of interviewers scored the applicants during two lengthy interviews according to identically prepared questions. Based on the outcome and the recommendation of the panel of interviewers, Village Administrator Mike Pollocoff has offered the position to John Steinbrink Jr. “In Pleasant Prairie’s ‘council-manager’ form of government, the Village Administrator is solely responsible for making hiring and firing decisions,” explained Pollocoff. “Because one of the candidates was a current employee and related to a member of the Village Board, we brought in an independent group of professionals to interview, in order to have an objective review of the candidates. This decision was based on their final assessment.”

Steinbrink Jr. began work for the Village in 1994 as a Truck Driver and Equipment Operator. From 1998 through 2000, he worked as a Village Engineer Tech and in 2000 was named Superintendent of Streets. Progressively since 2002, Steinbrink Jr. was assigned additional management responsibilities for Parks (2002), Solid Waste (2004) and Clean Water (2005). He holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Business Administration and Communication and a Bachelor of Science degree in Civil Engineering. Pollocoff added, “John Steinbrink Jr. has a solid work record with the Village, his solid performance can be seen by anyone who enjoys well plowed roadways during the winter months, well maintained parks throughout the Village, and by those who participate in the Village garbage and recycling program.”

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