O’Rourke gets nod as county administrator

Replacing Jim Schug, who will retire after 26 years

The Washington County Board of Commissioners named Molly O’Rourke, currently the Washington County deputy administrator, to the county administrator position at its regular board meeting on Tuesday, Jan. 17.

O’Rourke, 53, will succeed Jim Schug, who will retire Jan. 26 after 26 years with the county, 17 of them as county administrator. O’Rourke will assume her new duties Jan. 27.

The county board decided in December to conduct an internal job search for the position of administrator, and conducted interviews for the position Jan. 11, before naming O’Rourke to the position.

“We conducted a diligent process to seek Jim’s successor,” said Board Chair Dennis Hegberg of Forest Lake, “and were very impressed with the caliber of the candidates in our own backyard. We believe that we have found the best administrator to carry our county forward.”

The board set O’Rourke’s annual salary at $145,428.

O’Rourke has worked in Washington County since 1995, as deputy administrator, director of the Assessment, Taxpayer Services and Elections Department, as well as the acting director and assistant auditor-treasurer in the county’s Auditor-Treasurer’s Office.

Before joining Washington County, O’Rourke served as the city clerk in the St. Paul city clerk’s office and as the director of the St. Paul Mayor & Council Information and Complaint Office under two mayors, and as a policy analyst for the mayor of St. Paul. She has also worked as a legislative aide in St. Paul and as a social worker.

O’Rourke holds a master of public administration from Hamline University in St. Paul, and a bachelor of social development from the University of Minnesota-Duluth. She has also completed a series of leadership fellowships. She is a board member of the Stillwater Noon Rotary Club, and a past president of the Minnesota Association of County Administrators.

O’Rourke and her husband live in St. Paul. They have two grown daughters.

The other two finalists for the job included Kevin Corbid, head of the Washington County Assessment, Taxpayer Services and Elections Department, and Don Theisen, head of the Washington County Public Works Department.