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GT county leaders pick Alger for administrator job

Grand Traverse County

Grand Traverse County commissioners have picked a local law enforcement official to lead the county. This morning they voted four to three to offer Nate Alger the county administrator job.

Alger is the county undersheriff and has served as interim co-administrator for the county for the past few months. The interim management team – which included Alger, Deputy Civil Counsel Chris Forsyth and Deputy Administrator Dean Bott – took over after Vicki Uppal resigned abruptly from the position in January.

Commission chair Carol Crawford and commissioners Sonny Wheelock, Dan Lathrop and Ron Clous voted to give Alger the job.

Crawford says she made her decision during the final interview this morning.

“He hit a few hot buttons in me with some of the things he said about leadership and how to get things done and bring people together,” says Crawford.

She cast the final tie-breaking vote in part because of “his love for community and involvement in the community.”

“He’s well entrenched here,” says Crawford. “He’s well respected. Those are things that you can’t buy.” 

Commissioners Bob Johnson, Tom Mair, and Cheryl Gore Follette voted to offer the job to the other finalist, Thomas Hickner. Hickner was Bay County administrator for more than 20 years and served as a state representative.

Commissioners voted shortly after 9 a.m. on Friday, after final interviews with both candidates. The county still needs to negotiate a contract with Alger.

Morgan Springer is a contributing editor and producer at Interlochen Public Radio. She previously worked for the New England News Collaborative as the host/producer of NEXT, the weekly show which aired on six public radio station in the region.