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Conrad to resign from FD City Council

Accepts Humboldt Co. magistrate position

Fort Dodge City Councilman Neven Conrad will resign from the governing body on Oct. 11 as he prepares to become the sole magistrate for Humboldt County.

He announced his upcoming departure Monday, the same day he delivered a letter of resignation to City Manager David Fierke.

“It’s been a real privilege to not only be trusted, but be elected by the citizens,” Conrad said Monday afternoon.

“From my swearing in on Jan. 2, 2016, to today, it has always been an absolute honor and privilege to serve the citizens of Fort Dodge as one of their at-large council members,” he said. “I will miss the conversations and friendships with both fellow elected officials and city staff.”

Conrad is an attorney with the firm Conrad & Lemmenes, which has offices in Fort Dodge, Humboldt and Laurens. This summer, he applied for the Humboldt County magistrate position being vacated by Greg Stoebe. On Sept. 30, he was notified that he had been selected for the position.

He will officially become the magistrate on Oct. 23.

The Iowa Code of Judicial Conduct prohibits a judge or magistrate from holding a political office. Therefore, Conrad is resigning from the City Council.

Because the magistrate position is a part-time one, he will continue to practice law with Conrad & Lemmenes.

Conrad was elected to his first four-year term in 2015 and was re-elected in 2019.

He said that during his seven years on the council, the city invested nearly $100 million in infrastructure. He added that the city has partnered with Webster County, the Fort Dodge Community School District, the Greater Fort Dodge Growth Alliance and the private sector to improve the community.

Conrad said the purchase of the former Crossroads Mall and the transformation of the property into Corridor Plaza with city and state support will be one of the biggest projects in recent Fort Dodge history. He said it will “revitalize shopping and economic development” in the community.

He praised the city government’s workforce.

“Words cannot adequately describe the caliber and competency of the people we have working for all of us in the city of Fort Dodge,” he said.

Fellow councilmembers expressed their respect for Conrad Monday afternoon.

“He is a man of great integrity,” Councilwoman Lydia Schuur said. “We’ve been lucky to have him in the role he’s been in all these years.”

“I am super-excited for Neven in this job and career opportunity,” she said. “I am sad to see him leave the council because I really value his presence there. He would often ask questions or have a viewpoint that I may not have thought of.”

Councilman Terry Moehnke said Conrad was heavily involved in the ongoing development of Harlan and Hazel Rogers Sports Complex, the Corridor Plaza project and infrastructure work. He described Conrad as a “great resource.”

“He’s someone I can bounce ideas off of and get an opinion I respect,” Moehnke added,

Councilman Cameron Nelson served as Conrad’s campaign manager in 2015, then was elected to the council himself in 2021.

“I definitely think we’re going to be losing a valuable member,” Nelson said. “Neven is someone I’ve looked to as a mentor.”

He said “there’s been a million times” he’s called Conrad to discuss issues before the council and added that he plans to call him in the future about City Council matters.

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