Mayor Hodges’ Nominations for Directors of Civil Rights, Fire, Health and Public Works Confirmed
March 28, 2014 (MINNEAPOLIS) — By wide margins, the Minneapolis City Council today confirmed Mayor Betsy Hodges’ nominations of incumbent City of Minneapolis department heads Velma Korbel for Civil Rights, John Fruetel for Fire, Gretchen Musicant for Health and Steve Kotke for Public Work.
“Velma Korbel, Chief John Fruetel, Gretchen Musicant and Steve Kotke have been working for many years to keep our city safe, to run it well and to make it a place where everyone can thrive,” said Mayor Hodges. “As public servants, they are dedicated, innovative and have a record for getting results. I am happy to see the City Council reconfirm each of them, as their continued leadership and collaboration will be critical as we embark on the crucial work we want to do around equity.”
Velma Korbel was named Director of the Department of Civil Rights in 2010. Prior to becoming the Director, Korbel served for seven years as Commissioner of the Minnesota Department of Human Rights, the state agency responsible for enforcing Minnesota Statue 363A, commonly referred to as the Minnesota Human Rights Act. Korbel also served as Director of Diversity & Equal Opportunity for the Metropolitan Council. She is a veteran of the United States Navy, where she served for six years.
Chief John Fruetel began his career with the Minneapolis Fire Department in 1979.  Over the past 34 years, Chief Fruetel has served five years as a firefighter, eight years as a Captain, was promoted to Battalion Chief in 1993, and has held the position of Deputy Chief of Training, Deputy Chief of Operations, and Assistant Chief of Operations.  Chief Fruetel was appointed to his current position as Chief of the Department in March of 2012.
Gretchen Musicant was appointed Commissioner of the Minneapolis Health Department in 2005 after first starting with the city in 1999. Before that, Musicant was Vice President of Community Health for the Minnesota Hospital Association and a Government Affairs Specialist for the Minnesota Nurses Association. She leads a department of 93 staff members. She is the 2007 recipient of the Paul and Sheila Wellstone Public Health Achievement Award and has been designated one of the 100 Distinguished Nursing Alumni of the University of Minnesota School of Nursing. On April 10, The University of Minnesota’s School of Public Health will award Musicant the Gaylord W. Anderson Leadership Award, for her work as a visionary leader, teacher, collaborator and public health ambassador.
Steve Kotke has worked in the Public Works Department for 25 years, holding several professional positions before being appointed Public Works Director in 2006.  He has 35 years' experience in the engineering field in public and private entities. He leads the city's largest department and oversees eight divisions comprised of nearly 1,000 employees.
 
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Published Mar 28, 2014