Getting to Know…

In an effort to promote and refresh our Ottawa Way customer service techniques, Ottawa County’s Customer Service Team will be making more contributions to the County Connections Newsletter. These articles will highlight various departments within the County so we can get a sense of what services they provide to Ottawa County customers. Additional articles will include advice from county employees who have been nominated for the Customer Service Award plus some nominations whose stories were too inspiring to keep to ourselves.

County Administrator Office

The County Administrator is appointed by and serves at the pleasure of the eleven member County Board of Commissioners. The Commissioners are elected every two-years from equally apportioned districts within Ottawa County. Current County Administrator Al Vanderberg, is the fourth to serve in this position since 1975 when the position was first created by the Board of Commissioners. The Administrator’s Office staff include Keith Van Beek, Deputy County Administrator; Misty Cunningham, Administrative Assistant; Shannon Felgner, Communications Manager; Shannon McGoran, Improvement Specialist and Stephanie Roelofs, Secretary.

The County Administrator is responsible for the day to day administration of Ottawa County, management of non-elected and non-judicial functions and financial oversight and management of all County funds. The office is also responsible for oversight of all major projects involving facilities, information technology, etc. The County Administrator’s Office is responsible to set the tone and be an example of outstanding customer service throughout the County.

County Administration is responsible for the future direction of the County and for stimulating the Board of Commissioners, staff and other stakeholders; to develop new ways of looking at problems and arriving at solutions.  County Administration developed the strategic/business planning model, facilitates the annual Board of Commissioner strategic/business planning session and prepares quarterly updates on progress toward the identified goals and strategies. The Administrator’s Office also developed and oversees the Four C’s initiative.

The office is responsible for and involved in communications at every level: Board of Commissioners, Department Heads, Elected Officials & the Judiciary, citizens, local units of government, other counties, regional & state agencies & professional associations and the media.  The office also works in various settings with different non-profits and businesses and business associations toward common goals.

Administrator’s Office staff participates on and offers expertise to various County, local, community, regional, state and professional association boards, committees and commissions.  They also take the lead in regional collaboration and work closely with local units of government to develop relations that improve or maintain services and reduce cost.

The Administrator’s Office is very involved with legislation and lobbying in an attempt to reduce the harmful impact to County operations and services of some legislative, bureaucratic and court decisions from the state and federal levels.

Each day brings new issues and challenges to the County Administrator’s Office, making it an interesting and fast-paced place to work!

admin staff

Back row from left: Al Vanderberg, Stephanie Roelofs, Keith Van Beek │Front row from left: Misty Cunningham, Shannon Felgner, Shannon McGoran


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