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Nick Edwards named Joplin City Manager

On behalf of the Joplin City Council, Mayor Gary Shaw is pleased to announce Joplin native Nick Edwards has been named as Joplin’s City Manager. Read the entire press release from the city below:

Edwards comes from Lee’s Summit, Mo., where he served in administrative positions for the past nine years. Most recently he served as the Assistant City Manager from 2017 to 2019. Lee’s Summit is a southeast suburb of Kansas City, Mo, with a population of nearly 100,000.

“Nick has many strengths,” said Shaw. “Having worked in the Kansas City metro area, he has experience with commercial development as well as working with citizens in strategic planning to assist in the growth and quality of life of a vibrant and progressive community,”

Edwards holds a Master of Public Administration from Missouri State University and received his bachelor’s degree in political science from Missouri Southern State University. He is a member of the International City Manager Association (ICMA) and served in the United States Marine Corps from 1999 to 2003. He is a native of Joplin and is pleased to be moving back to this city.

“During my visit to Joplin I was reminded of the friendliness of the people and their strong work ethic,” said Edwards. “During my tour I saw many examples of how the community came together following the 2011 disaster to make Joplin stronger. It’s a wonderful community and I look forward to joining the City Council and city staff and offer my leadership to move the city forward to its next phase.”

City Council members held interviews with Edwards and three other candidates earlier this week. City management staff and Joplin Area Chamber of Commerce representatives had time with the candidates, and the Council hosted a community “meet and greet” for citizens to come and interact with the candidates. Some 80 people participated in the community gathering.

“The City Council wants to thank our city staff and community members who participated in our
activities Monday as we met and got to know those who have applied to be considered to be our next City Manager,” said Shaw. “We appreciate everyone’s participation in this process.

The search for a new City Manager began in March 2019, when the need to fill that position became apparent. At the City Council’s request, the City’s Health Director Dan Pekarek was asked to fill the manager’s position until a new manager was selected. Over the past year Mr. Pekarek, with the help of our dedicated city staff, has done an outstanding job of leading Joplin through some needed changes and challenging times, bringing us to today’s announcement.”

Edwards’ first day as Joplin City Manager will be March 16, 2020. He and his wife Joleen will be moving to Joplin in upcoming weeks.

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