Fox River Grove selects new village administrator

FOX RIVER GROVE – A Grayslake official next month will take the helm of Fox River Grove municipal operations.

The Village Board on Thursday approved an employment agreement with Derek Soderholm to be the next village administrator.

He will replace Karl Warwick, who is leaving to become the village administrator in Lake Villa.

Soderholm's first day will be Jan. 15. He currently serves as deputy village manager in Grayslake.

Soderholm's contract will run as long as Village President Bob Nunamaker's term, which has three years remaining.

Under the terms of the deal, Soderholm will earn $119,000 year, which is $7,000 more than the $112,000 Warwick earns.

He was one of three people to interview with the Fox River Grove board, Nunamaker said.

Soderholm has worked for Grayslake since 2001 in various management positions.

In Grayslake, Soderholm is responsible for implementing the downtown revitalization program, which resulted in significant business investment, according to a Fox River Grove news release.

"Certainly downtown redevelopment is a priority with the [Fox River Grove] Village Board," Soderholm said. "I'm really excited about that opportunity to have that and be part of that process."

Among the tasks Soderholm helped carry out in Grayslake were aesthetic improvements, such as a facade grant program, antique lighting, streetscape work and decorative concrete, and adding additional parking, to help make it an attractive place to visit.

Nunamaker said the village was excited to bring Soderholm on board.

"We got somebody with a track record of economic development," Nunamaker said.

Soderholm gave credit to his mentor in Grayslake, Village Manager Mike Ellis, for helping him develop his abilities.

He said he is looking forward to the new challenge of leading a community and further developing his management skills.

Soderholm said one of his specialties in Grayslake was focusing on continuous improvement and finding ways to be more efficient and save money within municipal operations.

"I look to apply some of that skill set here," Soderholm said.

The Derek Soderholm file

Town: Lakemoor

Family: He and his wife, Nikki, have a son Lincoln, 3, and a daughter, London, 1.

Education: Master's degree in public administration from Northern Illinois University.