After less than a year of service, the Neosho City Council will begin a search for a city manager to replace Leland Butcher, who has turned in a letter of resignation.
The council will meet in a special session Thursday to discuss his resignation, according to an agenda posted Wednesday morning. Police Chief David Kennedy will likely be appointed as interim city manager, said Mayor William Doubek, and the city will outline its next steps for conducting a search.
Butcher, formerly of Bentonville, Arkansas, was hired in September to effectively replace Troy Royer, who resigned in November, 2016. Dana Daniel, a former director of economic development and planning, served as the interim city manager until Butcher's hiring.
Doubek said despite the relatively short time Butcher was on staff, he will be missed. Doubek pointed out Butcher's skills with strategic planning as being particularly important for the city over the last few months.
"We're all sad to see him go," Doubek said. "He is really great at strategic planning, working with each department head and working through their needs. The whole idea of strategic planning may not have been well known to us until Leland. I'm happy for him, but sad for us."
Doubek did not want to discuss specifics of Butcher's resignation, but noted that Butcher recently received a doctorate degree, and such a degree opens up new opportunities.
Butcher did not return requests for comment in this report.