Fargo Park District Exec. Dir. Joel Vettel Quits After 3 Years
Vettel served as the director after longtime director Roger Gress retired
FARGO, N.D.– Joel Vettel, a staple in the Fargo community resigned Tuesday night as the park district’s executive director.
In Vettel’s statement he says “this was a huge undertaking and I recognize I had huge shoes to fill.”
Vettel served as the director after longtime director Roger Gress retired.
Vettel’s service to the community began in the late 90’s when he worked with the Fargo Police Department.
He was named executive director of the Parks Department three years ago.
His deputy director, Dave Leker, will fill the position on an interim basis.
“Dave has been exposed to a lot of things going into the interim position so that’s why we feel very confident that he can move into this and hopefully the taxpayer and our users won’t see any change at all,” Fargo board president Rusty Papachek said.
Leker spent 18 years as a parks director and two as the deputy director.
Papachek says Leker is a “natural fit.”
He did not comment on the reason behind Vettel’s departure.
KFGO Radio reports sources say Vettel’s reason for leaving was a “lack of confidence” from employees and it not being a good fit.
In his statement Vettel says “there are good people here and I wish them well. I look forward to spending more time with my family and friends, and finding my next professional opportunities.”
Leker could be in place as interim director until the end of October or until a new director is hired.
“This gives us a little bit of time to take a deep breathe to see exactly how we want to move forward with a permanent position,” Papachek said. “We’re spoiled not only with Dave but with the rest of the staff. We have people that have been with us for a long time, that are very experienced, that are very loyal.”
The Fargo board president says they expect to have a timetable for hiring a new executive director in the next few weeks.
Joel Vettel’s full statement:
“I would like to thank the citizens of Fargo for the opportunity to serve as the executive director of the Fargo Park District for the last three years. I stepped into this job with a vision and dream of improving upon our wonderful park district. This was a huge undertaking and I recognize I had huge shoes to fill. I did this job to the best of my ability, but I feel I can no longer continue in the role as executive director. Therefore, I have submitted my resignation to the Park District Commissioners. My family and I have always been huge supporters of the Fargo Park District and will continue to do so. This is a fantastic organization and a wonderful community. There are good people here and I wish them well. I look forward to spending more time with my family and friends, and finding my next professional opportunities.” – Joel Vettel