We introduce you Joplin’s new city manager, Nick Edwards

JOPLIN, Mo. – The City of Joplin has named it’s new city manager. The announcement came at a press conference earlier today.

The second floor lobby at city hall was packed with city and community leaders awaiting the announcement of the new city manager. Mayor Gary Shaw says “And I am happy to welcome Nicholas Edwards, Nicholas, God bless ya and welcome.”

Nick Edwards says “I had the opportunity to serve our country in the United States Marine Corps, was enlisted in 1999 and got a chance to go overseas to Iraq in 2002.”

From there he received a bachelor’s degree from Missouri Southern State University and a masters from Missouri State. After serving in different administrative roles with Lees Summit, Missouri, and most recently, as the Assistant City Manager. And it’s those skills he’s hoping to use to make Joplin stronger. Nick says “Certainly for the city of Joplin to realize the dreams it has for itself it’s going to require investment, it’s going to require being competitive, and it’s going to require prioritizing a lot of different things.”

We also asked about city, police, and fire pay, following the struggles the city faced to get things on track. “It’s important to make sure that we’re making the right investments in people and I think from there that will allow us to do many great things and I really want Joplin to be a leader here regionally and across the state for how municipal services are delivered.”

Mayor Gary Shaw says he knew Monday that Nick was the right choice. Mayor Shaw says “I was especially appreciative of watching him talk with our staff on Monday and I could see there was some connection there, and that’s what made me real comfortable in this choice.”

A Joplin native, Nick says he’s glad to be home. “What I love about Joplin the most is the people, and so it’s really rewarding and motivating to get that opportunity to serve them.”

And Mayor Shaw had praise for Interim City Manager Dan Pekarek. “I can’t express how much I appreciate the wonderful job he has done in the last year, we just, it was a time when we needed someone with his demeanor.”

Mayor Shaw says he’s not sure yet what Dan’s next role with the city will be, but he’ll spend the next few weeks working with Nick to get him up to speed.

Edwards’ first day will be March 16th.