Wednesday, December 06, 2000

Deerfield names executive administrator

It may be step toward top township job

By Kevin Aldridge
The Cincinnati Enquirer

        DEERFIELD TWP — Economic Development and Community Relations Director Dan Theno has been named executive township administrator by Deerfield trustees.

        Mr. Theno, who joined the township more than a year ago, will now supervise Deerfield's fire, zoning and planning, roads and public works departments in addition to his economic development and communications duties. While the promotion gives Mr. Theno more job responsibilities, it does not pay him more money. He will keep his $55,000 salary.

        The move, township officials say, could be a strong indicator that Mr. Theno is being groomed to take over for longtime Township Administrator Hazel Dotson, who is contemplating retirement in April. Mrs. Dotson, 61, recently talked publicly for the first time about plans to possibly leave the township early next year.

        “I'm just talking about it. Nothing has been finalized,” said Mrs. Dotson, who has worked for the township the past 16 years — nine years as its top administrator. “But I'm thinking maybe it could happen sometime after March.”

        Mrs. Dotson said health concerns are playing a role in her deci
sion-making process, as is wanting to spend more time with family. Meanwhile, she will still handle all of the township's legal issues, finances and daily administrative tasks.

        “I think the trustees made a good decision asking Dan to assume more responsibility,” Mrs. Dotson said. “In fact, I'm glad to pass off some of the workload.”

        Mr. Theno, a former city mayor and state legislator in Wisconsin, said it was premature to talk about replacing Mrs. Dotson. “The trustees have indicated to me depending on how I worked out that there might be a possibility of me assuming the position if Hazel retires, but that was certainly not a commitment to me on their part,” he said. “The positive thing for me is that the trustees' willingness to expand my duties is indicative of their confidence in my managerial background.”

        Mr. Theno's last position was as a manager of government and community relations for an Illinois company.


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