HR Green's Jennifer Winter hired as Cedar Rapids public works director

Winter will head up the city's 200-employee department

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CEDAR RAPIDS — Jennifer Winter, regional director at engineering firm HR Green Inc. in Cedar Rapids, is the city’s new public works director.

Winter will head up the city’s 200-employee Public Works Department with which she has been working in her position at HR Green to help plan and design the Paving 4 Progress program and to design flood control for the west side.

“I have a lot of respect for the leadership in the community right now, enjoy the projects with the city and saw this as an opportunity to be more involved with the city,” Winter, 40, said Monday.

Chairwoman of the American Public Works Association’s Center for Sustainability, Winter said about 6 percent of the public works directors across the nation are women. She said she might be the only woman in Iowa to hold that kind of job.

In her role at HR Green since 2004, she said she also has been working with cities across Iowa.

“While I enjoyed that role, I really saw this as an opportunity to make a bigger difference in this community, in Cedar Rapids,” said Winter.

City Manager Jeff Pomeranz said he and the city’s public works staff have gotten to know Winter well in working with her on city projects even as she has gotten to know the city’s organization and the projects and issues in front of it.

“We advertised and found a person right here in the city of Cedar Rapids that we have great respect for, that’s highly committed to Cedar Rapids and that has the skills, the leadership and the personality to be a phenomenal public works director for our city,” Pomeranz said.

Sandi Fowler, the city’s assistant city manager, said about a dozen people submitted resumes for the position, including some now in the department. Winter was one of three people interviewed, none of whom now works for the city, Fowler said.

Winter has a bachelor of science degree in civil engineering from Iowa State University.

She starts with the city April 13 and will replace Dave Elgin, who is retiring March 31.

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