Frank Ragan’s 30-year career in local government has included a vast array of experiences in three different communities in different parts of the country. He started his career in Henderson, NC in Parks and Recreation while finishing his Masters degree out of N. C. State University. He journeyed to Bloomington, Indiana, home of Indiana University, where he held the Parks and Recreation Administrator position with the city while simultaneously being appointed to teach at the university, a quite unique opportunity within the profession that managed to entice him to leave the Tar Heel State. While serving with Bloomington, he led a major bond initiative that built and/or renovated twenty-five parks and recreational facilities for the campus community.
After ten years in Bloomington, Frank traveled to Aurora, Colorado to head up one of the highest-awarded parks, recreation and open space departments in the country. After serving four years as Director, Frank was offered the opportunity of becoming Aurora’s Deputy City Manager (DCM) for Operations. Serving in that position for eight years, he was instrumental in coordinating all city-support services for the multi-billion dollar Fitzsimons Redevelopment project. The project, rehabilitating and retooling a closed Army Medical Base, has been transformed into the new homes of the University of Colorado Health Sciences Center, University Hospital, Children’s Hospital, the area’s first Bio-Science Research Park, a residential/commercial mixed use area in the core of the site, and other redevelopment partners.
Similar to what is being envisioned for the Carolina North project, Frank was the City’s lead in coordinating all planning services, infrastructure support, and environmental remediation activities with the Fitzsimons project. Working directly with the Fitzsimons Redevelopment Authority and its Executive Director, he helped forge successful partnerships with numerous federal and state agencies, as well as non-profits to help create a renaissance renewal story for a more impoverished area of the community. The Fitzsimons Redevelopment project became the poster child success story for the U. S. Army and won both the International City/County Managers Association’s and the Economic Development Administration’s first place awards for the best military base redevelopment project in the country.
While serving in the DCM for Operations position, Frank also managed the development of the City’s first comprehensive facilities master plan and helped spearhead major bond and financing initiatives that provided over $150 million of new construction including a new city hall, four fire stations, two police stations, two libraries, and numerous park developments and open space acquisitions. He personally directed the planning and development of the new $75 million 290,000 square foot, state-of-the-art Municipal Services Center that consolidated thirteen disjointed city office locations into one super customer-oriented, smart technology building.
In 2003, Frank rotated positions with another Deputy City Manager to oversee the remaining half of city services to the community. The Public Safety Communications Center, Police, Fire, Neighborhood Services, and Libraries, Recreation and Cultural Services Departments presently report to Frank, and he oversees 1400 employees and $150 million in annual appropriations.
Frank is married to the former Jackie Foster, of Henderson, NC, with one son, Bryce, and a stepson, Ryan, who lives in Raleigh, NC. Frank can be contacted at 303-808-0689.
A higher resolution photograph is available online.