Winter Park hires former Vail town manager as interim town manager |

Winter Park hires former Vail town manager as interim town manager

The town of Winter Park announced Tuesday evening that Stan Zemler will fill the role of interim town manager while a search is conducted for a more permanent solution.

The decision was made during a special meeting on March 1, and approved by the town council at its regular meeting Tuesday.

Zemler most recently worked as town manager for Vail, retiring from the position last year after 13 years. According to the town of Winter Park, Zemler has decades of worthwhile experience in the education, public service and advocacy sectors, as highlighted by a number of accomplishments with Vail including the founding of the I-70 Coalition, the Green Action environmental program and more recently the adoption of the Gore Creek Strategic Action Plan.

"Stan's leadership and resort experience makes him an ideal candidate to help us through this time of transition," said Winter Park Mayor Jimmy Lahrman. "Stan's appointment allows us to continue forward momentum on major initiatives such as affordable housing, town infrastructure and our master plan revision while we conduct a comprehensive search for a permanent town manager."

The town manager position opening follows former Winter Park Town Manager Drew Nelson's resignation in mid-February after he was arrested and charged the previous month for felony menacing-domestic violence. Finance Director Bill Wengert was the acting town manager before the Zemler's arrival.

Zemler was lauded at the meeting by town staff and residents familiar with his work around the state. At the end of the meeting, Zemler requested that a discussion regarding recruitment of a new town manager be added to the agenda for the town council meeting on March 20.

The town has already begun the recruitment and hiring process for a new, permanent town manager.