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New human resources director for La Crosse gets unanimous hire from City Council



The city of La Crosse has found its new human resources director in Winona. 

On Thursday, the city council voted unanimously to hire Rebecca Franzen to lead the La Crosse HR department.  Franzen was among more than 30 applicants for the position held for the last few years by the retiring David Buroker. 

Council president Barb Janssen says she is “extremely impressed” by Franzen’s commitment, especially on the occasion of her job interview.

“Most candidates probably would have called in and cancelled because we were having a snowstorm that day,” Janssen told the council, “but she showed up. She was right on time, maybe even early.”

Franzen has lived in Winona for seven years, working most recently for Behrens Manufacturing, and also in Winona area government.

Mayor Mitch Reynolds has said that Franzen is “ideal” for the position, and credited Buroker with helping to find his own successor.

In other council business, a few candidates who have run for mayor of La Crosse in recent years have now been appointed to positions in the city government by Mayor Reynolds.

Vicki Markussen, the runner-up to Reynolds for mayor two years ago, has been approved for a seat on the Economic and Community Development Commission.

Doug Farmer, who ran for mayor in 2013, has been reappointed to the Board of Zoning Appeals, where he has served for about 10 years.

And Dorothy Lenard, a finalist for mayor in the 2009 election, is reappointed to the Climate Action Plan Steering Committee.

A native of Prairie du Chien, Brad graduated from UW - La Crosse and has worked in radio news for more than 30 years, mostly in the La Crosse area. He regularly covers local courts and city and county government. Brad produces the features "Yesterday in La Crosse" and "What's Buried on Brad's Desk." He also writes the website "Triviazoids," which finds odd connections between events that happen on a certain date, and he writes and performs with the local comedy group Heart of La Crosse. Brad been featured on several national TV programs because of his memory skills.

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