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Yoder, new administrator

St. Joseph County’s search for a new administrator resulted in an unexpected selection Tuesday.

J. Patrick Yoder, who held the position from its inception in 1990 until 1994, has accepted the job, which is the highest, non-elected position in county government.

A native of Suttons Bay, the 63-year-old Yoder met with commissioners during a work session to discuss his potential role as a recruiter to help find a replacement for Judy West-Wing. She retired last month after spending the last two decades of her 30-year career with the county as its administrator.

During the course of the hour-long discussion Tuesday, it became clear that Yoder was a viable candidate after he indicated his interest in the role, according to board chairman John Dobberteen.

Yoder, whose contract as village manager of Three Oaks expires in mid-March, will start his new job April 1. Salary and benefits will be negotiated in the meantime, though Dobberteen said a likely starting salary will be close to West-Wing’s $85,000 annual pay at the time of her retirement.