The Tea City Council hired Dan Zulkosky at its July 10 meeting.
Zulkosky started his duties as city administrator July 17. The Minnesota native comes to the job after 20 years as a city administrator in Nebraska and Iowa and most recently after 15 years with Tea-based Lewis & Clark Regional Water System.
In his position at Lewis & Clark, he spent four years on the board before becoming an employee as a construction administrator. During his years in Iowa and Nebraska, he also served as public works director for a time.
Since he started working for the city this week, Zulkosky is working to figure out what’s all going on for the city.
“Tea’s got a lot of things happening. The growing pains kind of issues are starting to happen,” he said.
He noted that while in Nebraska he participated in a lot of economic development issues. He said infrastructure is key to making economic development work.
“Without infrastructure you can’t really have economic development so you’ve got to play your cards kind of slow. You don’t want to jump into the fire without any water per se,” Zulkosky said. “We have to concentrate a little bit on getting some infrastructure and our plan.”
As city administrator for Tea, he wants to make sure the city is doing things the most efficient way possible. When the city does a project, he wants it to be smart. Financially he wants to make sure the city can afford to do the things that it does.
He also wants to make sure that city staff works as a team.
“I want them to have fun at their jobs. I have fun at all my jobs. I have a tremendous amount of fun when I work. There’s a time to do that but there’s also a time to be serious and I’m fortunate enough to be able to have both of those hats,” Zulkosky said. “I have awful thick skin I can guarantee you that from all my years of dealing with the public and landowners.”
Zulkosky looks forward to working as city administrator and working with the city staff and citizens.
“The true thing about a city administrator is they run and manage your town. The council’s job is to set policy, make sure we’re spending money in the right direction and to fulfill any project for the future,” he said. “The real job isn’t to come in here and be a jerk.”
Zulkosky does not see any service changing for the city. He said the department heads and staff do a great job.
“There’s different things that I like to do a little bit different that I think are going to make us even more efficient,” Zulkosky said. “I’m looking forward to being here.”
He and his wife live seven minutes from Tea and have four adult children – two in Colorado Springs, Colo., and two in Omaha, Neb. He notes that they are the only grandparents in the United States with two sets of quadruplets in their family. They are grandparents to 11 grandchildren.