Davenport Mayor Mike Matson announced Friday, Nov. 17, the appointment of Mallory Merritt as the interim city administrator, effective immediately.
Ms. Merritt has served as the city’s assistant city administrator and chief financial officer since June 2020.
She brings continuity and a deep understanding of city operations and the day-to-day management of the city’s broad service areas, according to a news release from the City of Davenport.
“Her knowledge of the City of Davenport’s operations and the community as a whole offer the continuity we need, and I’m confident she’ll serve as Interim effectively and continue the city’s great work with our partners,” the mayor said in the latest release. “Our national search to fill the permanent position will commence in early 2024, with the goal of filling the position during the next calendar year.”
The appointment of Ms. Merritt comes just one day after city officials announced that Corri Spiegel – Davenport’s city administrator since 2016 – is leaving that position. Her last day on the job will be Jan. 2, 2024.
Tom Warner, corporation counsel for the city of Davenport, told the QCBJ in an email on Thursday, that Ms. Spiegel’s situation is an “amicable departure.”
Ms. Merritt brings more than 10 years of public administration experience, previously serving as the organization’s human resources director, assistant to the city administrator, and budget management analyst I and II.
During her tenure, Ms. Merritt has managed and led the city’s $240 million budget, including progressively responsible involvement in 10 different budget cycles – all receiving the Government Finance Officer Association’s distinguished budget award.
She also has managed numerous city-wide strategic initiatives including the implementation of the American Rescue Plan Act $40.9M allocation. Ms. Merritt was hired through the International City/County Management Association’s prestigious Local Government Management Fellowship Program in 2013.
Also, Ms. Merritt holds the Senior Certified Professional credential through the Society for Human Resources Management and serves as trustee for the Municipal Fire and Police Retirement System of Iowa. Ms. Merritt was one of the honorees in the inaugural QCBJ’s Forty Under 40 awards in 2022.
As the interim Davenport city administrator, Ms. Merritt will be responsible for managing and directing city operations and services to meet the city council’s goals and objectives.
“I am grateful for the opportunity to lead our community and our team through the interim
period,” Ms. Merritt said in the release. “I look forward to working collaboratively with staff to collectively continue the momentum on the city’s workplan and with the mayor and city council on filling the permanent city administrator position.”
Ms. Merritt holds a master’s of public administration from Auburn University and a bachelor’s of Science (Government) from Berry College.
In early 2024, the city will select an executive recruitment firm to conduct a national search for the permanent position, a process that is expected to take approximately six months.
PREVIOUS STORY — Corri Spiegel – Davenport’s city administrator since 2016 – is leaving that position. Her last day on the job will be Jan. 2, 2024.
The news was announced in a news release to the media on Thursday, Nov. 16.
Tom Warner, corporation counsel for the city of Davenport, told the QCBJ in an email, also on Thursday, that Ms. Spiegel’s situation is an “amicable departure.” The city plans to make an announcement on Friday, Nov. 17, concerning the appointment of an interim city administrator, he added.
He would not comment on why Ms. Spiegel is leaving the job.
However, in the release, city officials said Ms. Spiegel’s tenure with the city has been marked by numerous achievements.
“One of her most notable contributions has been her relentless commitment to the professional development of her team. She conceptualized the Davenport Strengths Institute, which has received international recognition for its success in talent development,” according to the news release.
Also, city officials said that under her leadership, the City of Davenport has experienced economic development accomplishments, including the retention and expansion of Kraft Heinz.
The news release also stated Ms. Spiegel was responsible for these accomplishments:
- Successful negotiation of a $10 million community investment fund as part of the Canadian Pacific-Kansas City Southern railway merger.
- Helped get funds for the $20 million Main Street Landing project.
- Helped get a $7.7 million grant for the grade separation crossing at South Concord Street.
- Helped get a $2.7 million grant for quiet zones in the city.
- Helped ensure the city’s public safety departments have the resources needed to serve the community. “These efforts have contributed to a safer and more secure community,” according to the news release.
“City Administrator Corri Spiegel has played a pivotal role in positioning Davenport for a prosperous future. Her leadership, dedication and numerous accomplishments have left an indelible mark on our community,” the release said.