Amy Cunnigham
City Administrator Stewart Fairburn was honored at Monday evening’s city council meeting for a devoting a decade of service to the city of Gardner.
Fairburn came to Gardner late in the winter of 2000 just as the city was in the middle of explosive growth.
“I heard about (the job) from (my friend Tom Kaleko). I knew that the city was poised for growth and that it had really shot up by the time I got here,” remembered Fairburn.  “The population was nearly 10,000, and it was experiencing was fast growth. We needed to keep up with it.”
In addition to the award Fairburn received from the city, he is also celebrating 30 years with the International City-County Mangers Association.  Before he landed in Gardner, his job took him on stops from Colorado to Oklahoma, Missouri and Texas, and from cities with a population of several hundred thousand down to our 9,000, but wherever he has worked, Fairburn is always putting his best foot forward for the community he is serving.
“When you’re working with government you’re always looking to make things better.  For me, going from a large to small city, in a large city you have bigger bureaucracy so it’s harder to make change, in small cities you know everybody…so here you do more, you wear more hats and that’s been kind of exciting,” Fairburn said.  “It’s a great job to be in.”