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St. Cloud police chief, facilities director announce their retirements

St. Cloud police chief, facilities director announce their retirements Click to Enlarge Photo:

Nov 22, 2011 at 9:03 am

ST. CLOUD, Minn. (KNSI) - St. Cloud will soon be looking to fill two top vacancies in the city ranks following the announcement Monday of the retirements of city police chief Dennis Ballentine and facilities director Lyle Mathiason.

Both retirements were announced by St. Cloud Mayor Dave Kleis before the start of the city council meeting Monday evening.

Ballentine, 66, was appointed to head the St. Cloud police force in 2001 following 33 years in the Ames, Iowa Police Department, including 17 years as chief.

AUDIO: St. Cloud Mayor Dave Kleis talks about the retirements of Police Chief Dennis Ballentine and city Facilities Director Lyle Mathiasen on KNSI's "Meet the Mayor," 11/22/11

"We've been very proud of his service in the community and he's really led the department and done some tremendous things in the area of public safety over the last 10 years," Kleis said.

Kleis also highlighted Ballentine's leadership in moving the department into the new St. Cloud Law Enforcement Center on 11th Avenue North in December 2009.

Ballantine's last day will be Jan. 27. The search would begin immediately for his replacement, Kleis said.

"I'm going to be taking a lot of input between now and January, from the public, talking to a lot of the officers," Kleis said.

Mathiasen, 61, joined the city payroll in 1973 when he took over as manager of the original Municipal Athletic Complex. Since then, Mathiasen has overseen countless St. Cloud projects, including the renovation and expansion of the MAC, the construction of the St. Cloud Civic Center in 1989 and its additions as the newly-christened Rivers Edge Convention Center currently underway.

"We've got a civic center that, unlike any civic center in the state, operates in the black and has for over 13 years. The MAC is operating in the black," Kleis said.

Mathiasen will officially retire Dec. 9. An examination of the Civic Facilities division will happen before the city determines how best to fill Mathiasen's position, Kleis said.

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