Gypsum names economic development director Jeremy Rietmann as town manager finalist
GYPSUM — Jeremy Rietmann, who joined the Gypsum town staff in 2016, has been named as the sole finalist for the Gypsum town manager position.
The Gypsum Town Council made its manager announcement Tuesday evening, April 24. The change at Town Hall was necessitated by the announcement earlier this month that Jeff Shroll, who served as Gypsum town manager for 24 years, has been named as the new Eagle County manager.
Unlike Eagle and Eagle County, who both launched national searches to find new managers, Gypsum responded to its leadership shake-up by shaking up the names and positions of current staff. In addition to naming Rietmann as the town manager finalist Tuesday night, the town board named town engineer Jim Hancock as assistant town manager and Frances Barela as town administrator and human resources director.
“We believe in promoting from within,” Mayor Steve Carver said. “That way, all of your town employees believe they can move upward.”
By announcing Rietmann as the sole finalist for the job, the town board began the clock for a mandated 14-day period that must transpire before they can make the hiring formal. The decisions regarding Hancock and Barela were effective immediately.
“I am very humbled by this opportunity and very excited to continue the culture of simple efficiency that I believe is a Gypsum trademark,” Rietmann said following Tuesday’s announcement.
Rietmann has worked as the economic development director for Gypsum since August 2016. Prior to that, he worked for the Vail Valley Partnership for five years and as a private consultant for a Washington, D.C., public policy group. He holds a bachelor’s degree in political science.
Rietmann cited Gypsum’s capable and long-serving staff, noting this asset is one of the reasons why he was tapped as manager.
“They are the technical experts who keep the town rolling,” Rietmann said.
Rietmann also noted that Shroll’s long service to the community — and the fact that Shroll is leaving his town manager post but remaining a Gypsum resident — also gives him an advantage. Gypsum Town Council members echoed that sentiment.
“We wanted a smooth transition and we didn’t want to spend a lot of time or money,” Town Council member Tom Edwards said.
“We wanted Jeff’s seat to still be warm when the new town manager came on.”
Edwards said the Town Council didn’t want to interrupt work now underway to focus on a manager search when Rietmann and other current staff members could step up and take over leadership.
“The reason why this is possible is because of our former town manager serving for 24 years and our fantastic staff,” Carver added. “Plus Jeff is just down the road. We will be working together.”
Facing traffic woes and oncoming growth, officials are looking at road improvements.