City manager search cut to five candidates

Current chief planner in top five (Updated with background information)
Andy Ouriel
May 5, 2014


A relatively new Sandusky employee is one of five finalists to potentially become the next city manager.

After an hour-long private meeting on Monday, all seven city commissioners agreed upon interviewing Sandusky chief planner Rebecca Corrigan for the government’s top position.

“I want the job because I feel with my experience in local government that I can offer effective solutions for the city’s economic sustainability,” Corrigan said. “I feel that Sandusky really needs to have someone to care about it, and I feel that can be me because I have the skill set and education to make things happen”

If appointed to city manager, Corrigan said she would prioritize economic development and neighborhood revitalization.

Her nearly 20-year employment history’s packed with development-related jobs in the public sector, including serving as a specialist for the Cuyahoga County commissioners from 1997 to 2001.

Corrigan, a Cleveland resident, also contended she’d remain in Sandusky, no matter if she won or lost her bid to become city manager.

“I am committed to the city of Sandusky,” Corrigan said. “In my tenure here, I have had other opportunities to leave, but I have decided to stay. There is just something (special) about Sandusky. I don’t want to go anywhere. I will work tirelessly to make things happen”

Her background and positive attitude motivated commissioners to select her as a finalist.

“I think she is a wonderful city planner,” Sandusky ex officio mayor Dennis Murray Jr. said. “I take it for face value that she is serious and believes that Sandusky is a great city and wants to continue working here but in a different capacity”

Going forward, and by next week, commissioners plan to schedule and conduct in-person interviews with each candidate.

They’ll then select the most qualified candidate sometime later this month. An opening for the position occurred after city commissioners voted to fire Nicole Ard in early March for failing to perform her job duties.

Commissioners hired Ard in fall 2011 with the approval from a consulting firm paid more than $20,000 in city funds. Ard obtained about $129,000 a year. Commissioners opted against using a search firm and decided to perform the ongoing search process themselves.

It’s not known how much the next city manager could receive, since commissioners plan to create an incentive-laden contract, in which the person could obtain more money based on accomplishing certain tasks.

Five finalists for Sandusky’s city manager position

Ted Andrzejewski
•Resides in:
•Current job: Eastlake mayor and safety director since 2004
•Education: bachelor’s degree in business management from University of Buffalo (1975); master’s degree in business administration from John Carroll University (1981).
•Experience: worked in various management and marketing positions with several companies, including AT&T, Sherwin-Williams and Medical Mutual of Ohio in Cleveland area (1980 to 1998); KeyBank branch manager in Cleveland (1998 to 2004).

Rebecca Corrigan
•Resides in:
•Current job: Sandusky chief planner since November 2013
•Education: bachelor’s degree in public administration from Slippery Rock University in Pennsylvania (1993); master’s degree in public administration from the University of Akron (1997).
•Experience: development specialist and community affairs liaison for Cuyahoga County commissioners in Cleveland (1997 to 2001); adjunct profession for Cleveland State University (2006); economic development and community planning director for Bedford (2001 to 2008); executive director for Berea Community Development Corp. (2008 to 2013).

Jack Haney
•Resides in:
Newton Falls, near Youngstown
•Current job: Newton Falls city manager since 2007
•Education: bachelor’s degree in education from Bowling Green State University (1979); master’s degree in public administration from University of Delaware (1983).
•Experience: administrative services manager for Lorain County commissioners (1984 to 1989); village administrator for New Concord, Ohio (1989 to 1991); village administrator and treasurer for Thiensville, Wis. (1991 to 1993); city manager and assistant city manager for Beavercreek, Ohio (1999 to 2006).

Fred Ramos
•Resides in:
Seven Hills, south of Cleveland
•Current job: attorney since 1988
•Education: none listed
•Experience: law director for Mayfield Village (1988 to 1991); Independence vice mayor and council member (1984 to 1993, 1996 to 1999); Independence mayor (2000 to 2007).

Eric Wobser
•Resides in:
•Current job: Ohio City Inc. executive director since 2009
•Education: bachelor’s degree in political science from Ohio University (2002); juris doctor from University of Michigan Law School (2005).
•Experience: AmeriCorps member in Cleveland (2001 to 2002); University of Michigan office of the general counsel law clerk (2003 to 2004); special projects manager for mayor of Cleveland (2006 to 2009).


Ralph J.

That sure was fast!!


A recent Eastlake Council meeting agenda lists the Mayor/Safety Director as Dennis Morley, not Ted Andrzejewski. What's up with that, SR?

Good 2 B Me

Another Woman in a Power position in Sandtown?

Not sure the GOB's will allow that.

Ralph J.

1 woman and 4 men?


Hmmm Rebecca Corrigan..she wouldn't be one of the hyper politically connected Corrigans from Cuyahoga County? Note she lives in Cleveland though she was hired by Sandusky in November 2013 just after Murray's election. Maybe she helped "plan" Ms Ard's exit by undermining her?


The fix is in, but I think we all expected that when Murray won the election. As much as people want change, they keep electing these same puppet masters.


From what I have been told R.C has a good handel on how to get grant money, and other funds. That is more then anyone else has been able to do. Hope this will be a step forward. And I think she works well with A.K. Who ever the choice is May the force be with them.


Corrigan will probably be the one chosen. I think if Corrigan doesn't get the job, the city could lose her to another city with her background. She seems to be working her way up the ladder and if she doesn't get the position, I think she will certainly move on after a certain amount of time spent in Sandusky. One thing that concerns me is that she lives out of town. We cannot have a city manager commuting to Cleveland every day, plus, there might be a problem with babysitters when it comes to her job. Is she willing to move to Sandusky? I think the commissioners, when hiring Corrigan, had her in mind as a possibility of a replacement for Ard's position.


Well so much for them taking their time...I knew they would rush it, but then when Don Iscman is in charge, I can't blame them for wanting to change that in a hurry....I'm not a bettin man but I do believe the woman will get it....


I think Eric Wobser should get the job. He has a proven track record in economic development at Ohio City Inc. in Cleveland 's near West Side. He's also a Sandusky native. It's interesting that the article omits his most recent position at Ohio City Inc.

Ms. Corrigna's resume is really disturbing. She worked for the Cuyahoga County Commissioners in the early years of County corruption involving Jimmy Dimora and Frank Russo and was apparently clueless about the contract steering.

She then went to Bedford, which was and still is along with Parma critical to political corruption in Cuyahoga County. At the present time the law director and Municipal court judge for Bedford are under indictment for bribery and other crimes. The clerk of Bedford is Tom Day a Democratic party operative and business partner with former county prosecutor Bill Mason. Their company was involved in questionable deals but they avoided prosecution in the federal probe and continue to pull strings. Both Day and Mason claimed to be have no knowledge of the corruption swirling around them.

She left Bedford in 2008 just as the federal public corruption probe started and was focusing on Bedford and went to Berea. Berea too had public officials named as part of the pay to play corruption in Cuyahoga.


That is exactly why Murray would pick her!


Corrigan was hired by Sandusky in Nov 2013 and still resides in Cleveland? Sandusky is going to try to raise income tax by .5-1%, just look at Murrays Town hall meetings, no surprise all those law degrees, more taxes more debt=successful government, right. No fix in Sandusky until debt plan is created and 15 million dollar capped budget, still increased taxes will be necessary to leverage success.

Perkins Resident

Raising the income tax will cause a flood of businesses to leave the city. Mine being one of them. Not a smart move.


Yep I agree about being not smart, but still a little fuzzy how a personal income tax would cause business to move out. People who live in the city are the ones who would pay a higher income tax. Sandusky could be like Perkins levy the property tax 13+/thousand versus Sandusky 5.25, either way Sandusky government is out of control.

Perkins Resident

Wrong. Anyone working in the city is subject to the income tax. I live in Perkins but pay city income tax. There are a lot of us that do, trust me. I've talked to many and if it goes up, we will go out.

Julie R.

I said it from the start --- this was all planned out from the get-go.

Ralph J.

City of Sandusky engineer Aaron Klein and Chief Planner Rebecca Corrigan were our guests on Between the Lines today. They talked about their jobs, where the city is currently and where they think the city is going in the future.


Contract excerpt::

Convince the taxpayers of the need to relocate City Hall. Reward--a free trip to Disney World.

Julie R.

Let's see ......... in Vermilion, Ohio the law director is Kenneth Stumphauzer from Erie County's super favorite big Lorain County law firm of Stumphauzer & O'Toole (i.e. Metroparks) and in Sandusky the "new" ex officio mayor is from Erie County's other favorite big Sandusky law firm of Murray & Murray. Somebody in the running for the new Sandusky city manager ~ who Murray is already applauding ~ is relatively new to Sandusky and hails from corrupt Cuyahoga County.

This was all pre-planned, Sanduskians.


I agree pre planned for sure.


She not only hails from Cuyahoga County but was right in the middle of the corruption at every position she held and appears to not recognize or report any of it. But than she has one of the most powerful political family names in Cuyahoga County.

Lovin 4 Life

In favor for Eric Wobser his background speaks volumes and for itself. A Sandusky native, A graduate of Ohio University and University of Michigan Law, A very intelligent family man with a loving wife and two beautiful boys. He takes pride in everything he touches. With his economic growth, experience and the history to the area and all the amazing work thus far, I'd say Eric would be a excellent and effective City Manger for the City of Sandusky if elected to this position. The heart felt attention he poured into the Redevelopment of Ohio City, a city similar to Sandusky is just fantastic and outstanding. Eric is a highly skilled lawyer, Commissioners could eliminate hiring a part time law director and probably eliminate many of the outside legal council they use....bonus!


I agree 1000% with you. However, it is precisely the facts that he is a highly skilled lawyer with a proven track record of economic development and high ethical standards that may result in him not getting the job.

He will pose a threat to the full time incompetent law director at $135,000 per year (more than the City of Lakewood, Ohio at $87,000) and his need to refer millions to outside counsel over the years because he isn't capable of doing the work. That will anger the legal community and business community that feast on unnecessary contracts, unnecessary litigation, contract steering, and lack of oversight that led to problems such as the housing grant disaster and high profile employment terminations.

Also, his legal knowledge and experience at one of the best law firms in the world means a certain lawyer on commission will not be able to run over him and micromanage the city by steering contracts and controlling investigations to protect his clients.

Finally, Mr. Wobser will set a high ethical standard in the city and that will not please the many special interests that profit off of the low bar of the status quo.


Ralphie are you making a statment that you actually work for the paper?


Interesting. Check out the list for the 2014 POWER 150 in Cleveland Crain's:

You will note the names of influential Clevelanders such as Toby Cosgrove (CEO of Cleveland Clinic), Mark Shapiro (President of the Cleveland Indians), Beth Mooney (CEO of Key Bank), Dan Gilbert (Owner of the Cleveland Cavaliers), Michael Symon (Celebrity Chef) and you guessed it, Eric Wobser of Ohio City, Inc. It's a no brainer, this guy is your hire and it makes sense now why they moved so quickly. I'm telling you, if Sandusky lets this one go they will surely regret it.