As expected, the River Forest Village Board voted unanimously Jan. 23 to appoint Matt Walsh as interim village administrator, replacing Brian Murphy, whose resignation was announced earlier this month.
Walsh has been serving as assistant to the village administrator since April.
Murphy’s last day at River Forest will be Jan. 27. He has served as village administrator since December 2021.
Village officials are not in a rush to look for Murphy’s permanent replacement.
“At this point in time, we’re not looking to hire a recruiting firm,” Village President Cathy Adduci said. “We’ll just figure it out as we go.”
She cited the strength of the staff, especially leaders, as a reason for officials to take their time.
“We’ve got great people around Matt,” she said.
Walsh has served as assistant to the village manager since April. Prior to his hiring in River Forest, he served the village of Homer Glen for over three years, including a year as interim village manager.
He also served as a commissioner on the board of the Park District of Forest Park for eight years.
Walsh graduated from the University of Illinois Chicago (UIC) with a Bachelor of Arts degree in 2015. He also received a Master of Public Administration degree from UIC in 2017.
Over protests from Murphy, who was attending his final village board meeting as village administrator, officials thanked him for his service and noted his accomplishments.
Trustee Katie Brennan was effusive in her praise. Adduci and Trustee Erika Bachner also thanked him.
Murphy served as Plainfield village administrator prior to his hiring in River Forest. He replaced Eric Palm, who left River Forest in February 2021 after 10 years to accept a similar position in Hoffman Estates.
Murphy earned his bachelor’s degree from Oakland University in Michigan and his master of public administrator degree from the University of Michigan.
Following Palm’s resignation, village officials used GovHR of Northbrook, a public management consulting firm, to conduct a search for his replacement. The firm, which serves local government clients and other public-sector entities across the country, had been used by River Forest previously, most recently to fill the village finance director position.