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Duncan city manager ready for retirement

Jim Frieda (Source KSWO) Jim Frieda (Source KSWO)

DUNCAN, OK (KSWO) -The City of Duncan is in the process of searching for a new city manager now that Jim Frieda is retiring.

Frieda made the announcement in February, saying he wants to start a new of chapter in his life. Frieda got his start as the city's attorney in 1984 and held that position for 26 years. In 2010, he was hired as city manager. After six years on that job, he's ready to move on.

He wanted to retire at the age of 43, but since that didn't happen, he promised himself he wouldn’t work a day over 70. Now that he's 74 and missed the second deadline for retirement, he says his wife is making him step down for some much needed quality time with his family.

Duncan City Manager Jim Frieda says he's proud of his more than 30 years of service to the City of Duncan, but he knows there's still work to be done.

"Basically what we're looking forward to is a commitment to the infrastructure of the city. It's something we need to do, but basically we've been short on the money," Frieda said.

He says that hasn't be his only challenge while being city manager. Frieda says keeping a balanced budget has been the most demanding part of the job.

"Number one, you have to predict. A budget is a prediction of what you anticipate the next year will bring, as far as income for the city, and basically you have to predict what your expenditures will be based on your prediction of what the economy will do," he said.

When asked what his legacy will be, he couldn't put his finger on it, but he did give himself a "C" average when it came to his work performance over the last six years.

"Because I was able to maintain the function required by a city manager. I was able to get the city employee's to work with me, they always have, I've worked well with the council, I think that's something that's expected. I've done an ok job," Frieda said.

He says now that the city's financial woes are on the mend, he feels good about passing the torch to someone new.

Frieda says his family is looking forward to his retirement and what he calls a new normal.

"We're looking at travel and I'm looking forward to spending more time fishing and learning how to play golf and things like that," Frieda said.

Frieda says his last day will be sometime in June. He and his wife plan to split their time between their home in Duncan and one in Texas.

Frieda says his position has been posted with the City of Duncan for the past three weeks. He says the city plans to take their time filling the position.

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