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Kim Lyddane has accepted a conditional offer to replace outgoing Albany Parks & Recreation Director Ed Hodney, City Manager Peter Troeddson announced Wednesday.

Hodney, who has held the position for 16 years, is set to retire June 30.

Lyddane currently serves as a program manager for special events and outdoor recreation for the Willamalane Park and Recreation District in Lane County. She’s held the position for eight years.

“She was one of 44 applicants for the position, went through a long and careful recruitment and interview process, became one of four finalists, and has emerged as our top candidate,” Troeddsson said. “She’s excited to join the Albany team.”

The 44 applicants were reduced to 17 for video interviews and then to four before Lyddane and Bedford, Indiana, Parks and Recreation Director Barry Jeskewich were named the top two finalists.

The city is aiming for a mid-June start for Lyddane.

During a meet-and-greet held on April 15 for the two finalists, Lyddane cited her experience as previous intern for the Albany Parks & Recreation Department and what drew her to the area again.

“It feels like a good place to stretch my legs and do meaningful work,” she said. “I just know what a gem of a community this is.”

Lyddane has a bachelor of science in marketing communications and a minor in music appreciation from Emerson College in Boston and a master of arts in management with a concentration in event management from the University of Oregon as well as a certificate in festival and event management from UO.

The city will celebrate Hodney’s retirement and honor his service during the June 26 City Council meeting. Hodney said he would continue to work with the department on an as-needed basis.

“I’m a photographer, so I hope to get back into that,” he said. “And I have plenty of projects around the house.”

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