The city of Topeka has announced the hiring of a new financial and administrative services director. Douglas Gerber , who currently is the city manager in Goodland , is expected to start in March, city marketing and communications director Suzie Gilbert said Tuesday. His annual salary will be $106,500 . "Doug's experience in the intricacies of city finance will help him hit the ground running," city manager Jim Colson said in a news release. "Our strengthened leadership team will continue tackling financial challenges while providing our citizens the high-quality services they expect." Five candidates were interviewed for the position, the release states. An ad for the finance director opening indicated the salary would be between $75,341 and $105,040 depending on qualifications, Topeka Capital-Journal archives show. Gerber takes the place of former finance director Pam Simecka , who left employment with the city of Topeka in November to become finance director for the city of Midland, Texas . Before that, she was reassigned in May as the city's controller. Simecka earned $105,040 annually as finance director and was to be paid $91,347 annually as the controller, according to Capital-Journal archives. In the interim, the city's finance director's duties have been carried out by Columbia Capital Management . The city's contract with the Overland Park -based firm is valid through the end of February, Gilbert said. In his new position, Gerber will oversee the city's financial and administrative services department, which manages the city's records of funds, projects and programs; provides internal and external financial reports; and processes all city financial transactions. As finance director, he also will oversee Nicole "Nickie" Lee , the city's new budget manager, a new position the council voted in August to bring back into the city's financial department. Lee will make an annual salary of $76,848 . She will be responsible for managing the city 's annual budget adoption process and the capital improvement plan, and she will help keep the city on track with the current budget throughout the year. Gerber has served as Goodland's city manager since 2009. From 2003 to 2009, he was city administrator for Beloit , where he also served as administrative services director, acting as chief financial officer and treasurer. He also previously served as assistant city manager for Salina and interned in the administrative offices of Kent County, Mich. , and the city of Manhattan . Gerber is a Leadership Kansas graduate, and in 2005 he received a Program Excellence Award from the International City/County Management Association . Gerber and his wife, Michele, have been married for 21 years and have six children. They enjoy traveling, family fun nights and cheering on the Kansas State University Wildcats.
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