Already hard at work at City Hall
Blue Earth’s new city administrator, Kim Moore, is still a few days away from her first “official” day on the job. However, she has actually been hard at work the past couple of weeks.
Moore’s two-year contract called for her to start on April 1. However, when Blue Earth mayor Rick Scholtes asked her when she could actually start, she answered she’d like to begin right away.
So, she quickly partially moved to Blue Earth over the weekend of March 7-8, and started work on Monday, March 9.
“I wanted to get started as soon as I could,” Moore says. “And, it is going well, other than dealing with the coronavirus situation.”
She says everyone has been very friendly and welcoming and she is impressed with Blue Earth.
“The city really has a lot of things that have been going on, a lot of projects in the past and some are in the works,” Moore says. “And the staff has been great, all of them offering to help if I need it.”
That includes learning names, places and what has been going on in the city.
“I have been learning a lot from the minute I moved in here,” she says. “And I love to learn new things.”
Moore admits she has moved around a lot and lived in a variety of places. That starts with where she was born.
“Well, my father was in the Air Force, so I was actually born in the Army hospital in San Antonio, Texas,” she says with a smile. “From there it was to different places, including Tokyo, Japan, where we lived for four years.” When they came back to the states the family lived in Fairborn, Ohio, for a number of years.
“After my parents divorced, my mother and siblings moved to northern Wisconsin, to Spooner,” she says. “Then we moved to Shell Lake, Wisconsin.”
And, that is where Moore graduated from high school.
After that it was on to the Twin Cities where she graduated from the University of Minnesota with majors in European history and foreign languages.
“I met my husband in college,” she says. “And he got a job in California, so we moved to Santa Rosa, California, when we first married.”
While there the couple had two daughters born during their five years in California. And, since she did not find a job in her area, Moore decided to go back to grad school and get her master’s degree in public administration.
Her first position was an internship with the city manager in New Brighton, Minnesota. That meant she was coming back to Minnesota and her family came with her.
“So I only had the internship and my husband had quit his job to come back to Minnesota with me, so neither one of us had a real job,” she says. “And we had two little girls.”
But, her husband found a job and so did she, as the assistant city manager in the city of Ramsey, a position she held for a couple of years.
Moore was the assistant city manager for the city of St. Anthony Village two different times, from 1994 to 1999, and from 2004 to 2012. In between those two stints, she was the city administrator for the city of Centerville from 2001 to 2004.
In 2012 she was interim city administrator for Pine City, but then she was recruited by Sibley County to become their human resources director, a job she did for three years.
“But, I really wanted to get back into city management,” she says. “That is my real passion.”
So, she took the job as the city administrator of Gaylord, and then as the city administrator of Amery, Wisconsin.
Moore and her husband divorced some years ago, and her two daughters are grown and living on their own, so the decision to move to Blue Earth was an easy one for her.
“My ex-husband is British,” Moore says. “So my two daughters actually have dual U.S. – British citizenship.”
Her oldest daughter, Braena Sykes, now lives in London, England.
“She loves to travel and loves history,” Moore says. “After she graduated from St. Catherine’s, she traveled in England and Ireland, studying ancient sites, and then got her master’s degree in ancient history in London.”
She now works at Hampton Court, which is King Henry the 8th’s palace.
Moore’s other daughter, Emilea Sykes, is a bio-medical engineer and works for Boston Scientific in their Twin Cities Minnetonka lab.
“Both my family and my ex-husband’s family have always stressed education and learning and gaining experience in the world,” Moore says. “So my two daughters come by that trait naturally.”
Moore says that yes, she does get to London once in a while, and her daughter Braena, along with her boyfriend, do get back to the U.S. once in a while.
When she moved to Blue Earth, Moore did not come here alone, she says.
“I have a puppy,” she says. “He is a Schipperke, a Belgium breed, a small black dog. That breed is very smart, obedient, a good dog.”
She should know. She had one before, for 16 years, but it died recently.
“One of my hobbies has been training dogs,” she says. “I had some Shetland sheep dogs in the past, another smart and loving breed. I have been a part of dog clubs and I have trained and shown my dogs at dog shows.”
When the weather gets nicer and the pandemic situation improves, she plans on being outside with her puppy doing a lot of training.
Another of her hobbies is genealogy, and she has done extensive research on her family ancestors. She also likes to quilt and knit.
But, for right now, her main activity is to learn everything about Blue Earth and what is going on, and has been going on, in the city.
“And, since I am a history buff, that includes the whole history of the town,” she adds. “This is a very interesting city, with a lot going for it, and I am happy to be here.”