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After leading Geneva’s government operations for the past eight years, City Administrator Mary McKittrick will be retiring effective June 10.
McKittrick decided to retire to spend more time with her family, traveling and enjoying the next chapter in her life after working more than three decades in the public sector, the last 17 with Geneva.
“Serving the City of Geneva has been an honor and a privilege,” McKittrick said. “My passion and calling in life was to serve in local government, and I have been fortunate to have done that for more than 30 years; first as an elected official and then as a chief administrative officer overseeing a multi-million dollar municipal corporation. I am proud to have served our community alongside our Geneva City staff, who reflect professionalism, ethics, accountability and collaboration in their daily work. I will miss them and the challenges that running a city brings.”
McKittrick will publically announce her retirement at the Monday, March 7 City Council meeting, where aldermen also will consider the appointment of Stephanie Dawkins as the City’s next City Administrator. Dawkins is currently the City’s Assistant City Administrator/Director of Administrative Services.
“Mary’s stewardship of Geneva’s mission and vision was instrumental in building a culture of excellence,” Mayor Kevin Burns said. “Her contributions were the result of her selfless work ethic and personal commitment to serving the best interests of the citizens and businesses who call Geneva home. Geneva is better off because of Mary’s tenure as City Administrator, and the City is well positioned to embrace the opportunities and address any challenges that come our way.”
McKittrick was influential in creating the City’s Strategic Plan Advisory Committee, the Student Government Program, partnering with Northern Illinois University to establish an internship program at the City, establishing an Employee Ethics Committee, who in turn developed a City Code of Ethics, and cultivating a professionally run organization.
The City received its first budget and audit awards several years ago under McKittrick’s leadership. She has also been an advocate for improving Geneva’s communications outreach, which resulted in updating the City’s website, including a transparency webpage, hiring the City’s first communications coordinator in 2013 and establishing a City presence on social media.
Prior to her appointment as City Administrator in 2008, McKittrick served as Geneva’s Assistant City Administrator/Director of Administrative Services beginning in 1999. In that position, she was responsible for all operations in the Finance, Human Resources and Information Technologies divisions. She began her career in local government as an elected official in 1985 until her appointment as the first Village Administrator for the Village of Oswego in 1991.
As the Geneva’s City Administrator, McKittrick supervises all department heads, manages the day-to-day operations of the City’s government and serves as Budget Officer, overseeing the preparation of annual budgets for the City Council’s approval. Responding to the recession, McKittrick reduced the City’s General Fund budget by more than 20 percent, which is currently $1 million less than it was eight years ago, while the City continues to provide excellent essential services to residents, business owners and community stakeholders.
In spite of ongoing fiscal challenges, and under McKittrick’s tenure, Geneva has constructed a third level on the downtown commuter parking deck through grant funding, created additional commuter surface parking on Fourth Street and taken a conservative financial approach and proactive steps to manage increasing costs, deteriorating revenues and the uncertainty of a slowly recovering economy.
McKittrick has taken an active leadership role as Legislative Chairman with the Metro West Council of Government, which is an association of 35 municipalities in Kane, Kendall and DeKalb counties working together to address regional issues such as unfunded mandates, growth, transportation, water conservation and economic development. She also is a member of the Illinois Municipal League’s Managers’ Committee, a member of the Northern Illinois University Public Administration Board of Advisors and periodically serves as an instructor at Waubonsee Community College and conducts occasional training sessions in leadership and governance, local government and strategic planning.