In an age where a person is lucky to hold down the same job for five years, Tom Markus is an incredible exception. 59-year-old Markus has served as the city manager of Birmingham for 21 years; on September 29, he officially resigned the post in favor of a more challenging role in Iowa City, Iowa. The popular city manager plans to make the move in November.
Markus zeroed in on Iowa City for its location – he grew up in southern Minnesota – and for its size. Birmingham’s population hovers around a cozy 20,000 residents; Iowa City’s population is right around 70,000. Markus has visited Iowa City many times through the years and was recently up against four other finalists for the city manager position. After a marathon three-day interview process, the City Council, mayor and public agreed that he was the man for the job. The move is undoubtedly bittersweet for the people of Birmingham, who are sure to miss their long-time city manager.