FCEDC president Depperschmidt resigns; Duvall appointed interim president
Wednesday, Nov 16, 2011 10:00 am
By SHAJIA AHMAD
GARDEN CITY -- As local economic officials undergo an organizational
transition, they now also will have to look for new leadership.
Eric Depperschmidt, president of the Finney County Economic Development
Corp., has resigned. The announcement was made Monday by the FCEDC's board
Depperschmidt, who has a bachelor's degree in history from Fort Hays State
University, worked for U.S. Sen. Jerry Moran's western Kansas congressional
district from 1999 to 2004, when Moran was a U.S. representative. Prior to
starting in Finney County in April 2006, he was an economic developer in
Board chairwoman Cathy McKinley, dean of continuing education at Garden City
Community College, said Depperschmidt has served in the leadership capacity
for six years and submitted his letter of resignation to her board Friday,
following a closed session for matters of non-elected personnel.
"We wish (him) the very best and appreciate the service he has given to our
community's development," McKinley said in a release Monday. "The board has
formed a search committee to find a replacement, and we are enthusiastic and
confident about the future of economic development in Finney County."
Depperschmidt could not be reached for comment Monday. He is a graduate of
Ness City High School and served as the economic development director of
Ness County before later moving on the similar position in Finney County.
In a separate interview, McKinley said she does not know if Depperschmidt is
relocating or has sought or is seeking new employment.
The publicly-funded corporation that exists to recruit and retain business
in the interest of creating high-paying jobs for Finney County is undergoing
a transition in its organizational structure.
The corporation, with a three-member staff, is funded primarily by the city
of Garden City and Finney County, with smaller supplemental annual funding
from GCCC and the city of Holcomb.
The FCEDC board of directors has been working since earlier this year to
transition to a part-private, part-public model, where operations of the
corporation would be funded by private business membership dues and economic
development incentives would be provided by FCEDC's current partners or a
possible sales tax.
McKinley said because that initiative is board driven, she is not concerned
with the absence of Depperschmidt's leadership until the board finds a new
"It won't impact our plans to move forward with the private, public model.
... We've been considering it now for some time, and it's a good funding
option for us," she said.
McKinley said the FCEDC board of directors has appointed Lona Duvall,
FCEDC's business retention director, as interim president.