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County's human resources director resigns

Dyer 'shocked and surprised' of Kasper's decision

Published: Thursday, Nov. 1, 2012 12:19 p.m. CDT • Updated: Friday, Nov. 2, 2012 10:17 a.m. CDT

On top of searching for a new county administrator, the Grundy County Personnel Committee will now be looking for a new human resources director.

Current Human Resources Director Denise Kasper resigned from the position at a special meeting of the committee Thursday morning. Kasper's last day is Friday.

Prior to the committee going into executive session to discuss county administrator candidates, Kasper said she had something for them that might alter the structure of how they proceed with the meeting. She then gave the members her resignation letter.

"I've been provided with an opportunity and made a decision both personally and professional for me and my family to move on," said Kasper.

Kasper said after the meeting that she did not want to comment on where her new job was. She was with the county for just under four years, she said, and worked under two county administrators and two county board chairmen. She has been in human resources for 16 years and came to the county after working for the city of Yorkville for five years.

"I hope for the best for our county employees," she said to the committee.

In the audience of committee meeting was former county administrator Shawn Hamilton. Hamilton left the county in July to be Park Ridge's new interim city manager. Coincidentally, Park Ridge has a new human resources opening, according to published reports. But according to Hamilton, it is purely a coincidence.

"She is not a candidate for my position up here," Hamilton said in a phone call later Thursday morning.

"I received a phone call from a former employee saying she was making a decision that was best for her and her family ,and I wanted to support her in her decision," Hamilton said as to why he was at the meeting.

Millie Dyer, chairwoman of the personnel committee, said after the meeting the resignation came as a complete surprise.

"I think we're just all shocked and surprised," she said. "We didn't know til our meeting started."

Grundy County Board Chairman Ron Severson was not present at the meeting, but said in a phone call later that he was unaware that Kasper was looking to leave.

Severson said the county will work right away to fill the position and does not believe they will have trouble filling it because they have had previous inquiries regarding the position.

Severson said he thought Kasper was going to work for Hamilton until he was told otherwise.

"It would have been helpful to have her for a couple more weeks, but we'll make it through," he said.

The personnel committee has narrowed down the candidates for the county administrator position to three people, Dyer said. All three of them are being invited to the county board meeting Nov. 13 for a meet and greet.

The personnel committee will meet again Nov. 14, but Dyer couldn't say whether there would be a decision then or not with it being just after the election and there being a new county board.

"We want it to be right," she said.

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