The council interviewed Amber Mikell, then Mary Nash immediately following the first interview’s conclusion.
Riverside Mayor Rusty Jessup and Councilmen Jimmy Hollander, Bill Cantley and Johnny Osborn were present for the interview. Councilmen Frank Riddle and Kenny Womack were absent.
Amber Mikell, who is married to Matt Mikell, has an Associate of Applied Science – Paralegal Studies from Gadsden State Community College. She served as a pharmacy manager II before going to work for the City of Pell City, where she works in administrative clerk/accounts payable.
“I was raised in Riverside,” Mikell said. “I have almost seven years experience working in municipal government.”
Mikell said she has experience preparing agendas, ordinances and resolutions.
“I currently work in accounts payable and work with all the departments,” she said. “And I can do payroll.”
Mikell said she would like to see cities take on projects to help their citizens.
“I’m most comfortable in a team environment,” she said. “I can work well alone, but feel the team environment works well in a collaborative effort.”
Mikell said if employees are not holding up their end, she would speak with them one-on-one and review the employees duties to ensure they understood what is expected of them.
“If they still don’t perform, then there is the city handbook detailing the proper steps to take,” she said.
Mikell said she uses social media, which can help or hurt depending on what is put out there.
“I think a successful city clerk is a do-all person,” she said. “The city clerk has many responsibilities and needs knowledge of the city and its departments.”
Mikell said characteristics of a successful manager include leadership, with a good leader having the trust of their employees, and open communication.
Mikell said if hired, her goal is to be a long-time city clerk for Riverside.
“I keep a calendar and my priorities are family and work,” she said. “Times get stressful, but staying positive always helps a stressful situation, as well as knowing what the problem is and coming up with a solution.”
Mikell said a good public servant is a representative of the city as a whole.
“The people put you there and you should hear their opinions,” she said.
The council interviewed Nash earlier than the 7 p.m. estimated start time immediately following Mikell’s interview.
Nash, who is married to Jack Nash, said she has been career searching since May.
“I have a Bachelors of Science in business from Talladega College,” she said. “I worked at Talladega City Hall for almost 12 years and recently worked for Elwood staffing Services Inc. and Sycamore Federal Credit Union.”
Nash said the Riverside City Clerk position looks like an exciting job where she could put her skills to work.
“I view it as a home, because I’m looking for a career where I stay, not a stepping stone,” she said.
Nash said she believes city funds should be spent for the betterment of the city.
“Listening to complaints from residents is also very important,” she said.
Nash said she can work with teams or by herself, although she is most comfortable working by herself.
“I use social media, which can be used well or used badly,” she said. “I am also comfortable interacting with the public for special events. I am fine with late meetings and attending special city events.”
Nash said characteristics of a successful manager include knowing when to listen as well as when to speak.
“I would get along with employees and make sure they know their expectations,” she said. “I would want to be able to do whatever they are asked to do.”
Nash said she would deal with difficult people the way she would want to be dealt with.
“You don’t know what they are going through,” she said. “Hopefully you could reach a happy medium, if possible. If not, there are municipal procedures for termination of necessary.”
Nash said delegation could be a weakness, because she has a hard time delegating her responsibilities.
“I have a hard time because those are my responsibilities and I’m accountable for them,” she said.
Nash said she prioritizes by doing what is most important first, then working through her calendar.
“I’m a pretty positive and happy person,” she said. “Positive attitudes are great to have.”
Nash said to be a successful city clerk, she would learn all she could from current Riverside City Clerk Rhonda Johnston.
“I would follow Ms. Johnston’s lead, ask questions and work on continuing education,” she said. “I’m a goal-oriented person. I have researched the requirements for city clerk and although there are a lot of them it doesn’t bother me. I’m excited about taking classes. I’m a dedicated employee. I show up to work on time, give 100 percent and works until the job is done.”
Contact Elsie Hodnett at firstname.lastname@example.org.