Elected officials and city employees said farewell to City Manager Wally Bobkiewicz at a gathering at Evanston’s Levy Center Friday afternoon.

Alderman Ann Rainey, 8th Ward, who’s worked with five city managers over her decades on the City Council, said Bobkiewicz “is by far the best city manager we’ve had.”

Wally Bobkiewicz and Steve Hagerty.

Mayor Steve Hagerty said Bobkiewicz has built a legacy in Evanston by recruiting “an incredible team of amazing” city employees.

Some of the roughly 100 current and retired city employees, elected officials and residents who turned out for the event in the gymnasium at the Levy Center.

Former Alderman Delores Holmes said Bobkiewicz had made a special effort to learn about her 5th Ward. “He even went to church with me and sat through the whole service,” Holmes said.

“I’m so proud to have been part of watching this city change under your leadership. Thank you so very much,” Holmes added.

State Sen. Laura Fine said, “Wally was always there for any question I ever had. He’s been a tremendous asset to the Evanton community.”

After just over 10 years as Evanston’s city manager, Bobkiewicz leaves later this month to become city administrator of Issaquah, Washington. He’s said he’s moving to the Pacific Northwest to be closer to members of his family.

Bill Smith is the editor and publisher of Evanston Now.

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