The Helena City Commission has named Rachel Harlow-Schalk as its choice to become the next city manager.
Mayor Wilmot Collins announced Saturday afternoon that the commission had reached a consensus to pursue a contract with Harlow-Schalk, after about an hour of deliberations.
Harlow-Schalk is currently the state of Colorado’s deputy director of local government. She has worked in the state’s Local Government Center since 2014, and previously held several positions with the city of Westminster, Colorado.
Helena received 94 applications for the city manager position. The city commission narrowed the field to two finalists, who came to Helena this weekend for final interviews. The other finalist was Troy Smith, deputy city manager of Commerce City, Colorado.
On Saturday, the commission held 90-minute interviews with both candidates. Commissioners praised them both as highly qualified, but said they look forward to moving forward with Harlow-Schalk.
Once the city and Harlow-Schalk reach agreement on a contract, it will have to be approved at a regular commission meeting.
Former city manager Ana Cortez left her position in February. Melinda Reed was chosen as the interim city manager, and will serve until a permanent city manager arrives.