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Two finalists for Grand Traverse County administrator job

Grand Traverse County

The search for Grand Traverse County’s next leader is down to two candidates. County commissioners will choose between a local law enforcement officer and a former state representative from Bay City.

The commission has been searching for a new administrator since the surprise resignation of Vicki Uppal in January. With the help of a consulting firm, the commission has named two finalists for the job – Nate Alger and Thomas Hickner.

Alger is the county undersheriff and serves on the village council in Kingsley. He’s been filling in as a co-administrator of the county since February.

Hickner led Bay County for 24 years and served 10 years as a state representative in the 1980s and 90s. He was a finalist last year for the position of Emmet County administrator, but he withdrew his name from consideration.

Commission chair Carol Crawford says both candidates are qualified for the job.

"I think either one would do an excellent job," says Crawford. "Based on how the interviews went, I think these are two very well-qualified candidates.

The county will host a community forum with the two candidates next week.

Crawford expects the commission to make a final decision next Friday.