By Jen Bakken
The City of Delano began its search for a new public works director in August, interviewed candidates in September, and the city council approved the hire of Ernie Eden in October.
“We sought a candidate with experience managing in public works and a background in engineering,” said Delano City Administrator Phil Kern. “Ernie is a great fit for the city with his background, and we are pleased to have him join our staff.”
Eden brings extensive experience with him to the City of Delano. He attended college first at Dunwoody Institute, followed by North Hennepin Community College, where he earned a degree in management and a public works certificate. He worked for a civil engineering firm in Osseo, before working for the City of Champlin.
In Champlin, he was the senior engineering technician and oversaw all new construction and redevelopment projects.
Six years later, Eden began working for the City of Robbinsdale as the public works superintendent.
“I was responsible for sewer, water, parks, streets, city fleet, municipal buildings. I oversaw new construction and redevelopment,” Eden said.
After 12 years with the City of Robbinsdale, he spent over three years with a civil engineering firm in Anoka, before landing in Delano.
When Eden interviewed for the public works director position in Delano, he was impressed with the city staff.
“I liked their idea of seeing the city grow, but keeping the downtown area, and saw it as a great opportunity to be part of,” he said.
Eden lives in Buffalo, only 10 miles from Delano, which he admits is another benefit to working in Delano. He has three daughters, two of which are presently in college, and one who is 13 years old.
With his first day on the job being Nov. 1, he is still familiarizing himself with the area, city projects and budgets, and meeting everyone. There are four other people who work in the public works building with him, and he hopes to keep them involved and interested in serving the community.
“My first goal is to start getting more involved in the engineering process,” he said.
Even though he just began his new position, Delano has already made an impression on him.
“There are such nice people in Delano,” he said. “It’s a nice town and I’m excited about being here.”