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Planning for Municipal Manager Succession: Proven Methods to Fill Vacancies Successfully

The four steps every municipality should take in the search to hire the best, most qualified candidate for manager positions.

When a municipality is ready to shift its focus to looking for a qualified, skilled candidate to fill an open manager position, from identifying short-term solutions to ensure services are still delivered to residents and projects are being competed, there is a series of proven best practices officials should follow. As Keystone Municipal Solutions’ Brooke Queenan discusses, these steps — completing an internal process, advertising the position, screening candidates and selecting the best applicant — are integral to hiring the best manager.

Key ideas Brooke covers include:

  • Establishing a team best equipped to recruit and evaluate candidates, including ways to attract the best applicant and create an updated job description

  • Implementing an outreach strategy that targets posting boards most likely to be seen by the candidate you’re looking for.

  • Developing an applicant screening process that focuses on your preferred job qualifications, core competencies, and advertising the municipality as an attractive work environment.

  • How to choose a candidate that checks all the boxes, and how to negotiate terms.

The Keystone Municipal Solutions team can help your municipality develop and implement a succession strategy, plan for hiring top talent and consult with human resources, in addition to offering other dynamic services. For more information on ways they can support your municipality, visit You can also connect with Brooke on LinkedIn or contact her directly at


This is the last entry in a three-part series from McNees Wallace & Nurick LLC with its subsidiary Keystone Municipal Solutions about best practices for municipal manager succession planning. You can find the other posts, about important labor market trends and key strategies to smooth the transition process, here.

Brooke has diverse experience advising public and private entities in realms including public policy and finance, community and economic development, and issues related to urban economics. She successfully secured grant funding for public and private clients through various programs, including the Pennsylvania Redevelopment Assistance Capital Program.

As an integral member of two Financial Recovery Teams appointed through the Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development (DCED) Act 47 program, Brooke was tasked with advising Pennsylvania municipalities experiencing severe financial difficulty. She also developed various multi-year financial plans through the DCED Strategic Management Planning Program.

Prior to her consulting work, Brooke was an accomplished collegiate and professional basketball player. She was selected 23rd in the 2006 WNBA draft after completing her degree at Boston College, and subsequently played nine years as a professional domestic and international basketball player.

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