A Look at Chris Holman & His Role as Marathon County’s Deputy County Administrator

Written by Lance Leonhard

I’ve had the distinct honor of serving as Marathon County’s Administrator for the last 2+ years and as part of my role, I have the unique opportunity and responsibility to provide leadership in a number of areas of County Government, including supervising non-elected Department Heads, drafting and presenting a proposed annual budget to the HR, Finance, & Property Committee for consideration, recommending organizational changes, and carrying out policies enacted by the County Board.

As you might imagine, serving the largest geographical county in the State of Wisconsin, and an organization with 21 departments and 5 inter-governmental entities, is no easy task. But, I’m humbled to serve alongside our more than 750 county employees who work tirelessly to move us toward our goal of being the Healthiest, Safest, and Most Prosperous County in Wisconsin.

So, why am I sharing all of this with you?

Marathon County recently had the honor of welcoming our newest Deputy County Administrator, Chris Holman, to our County Administration team. His name may be familiar to you as he most recently served as the Portage County Executive. I’d like to provide you with the opportunity to get to know a little bit about him and how his role plays a key part in managing the day-to-day operations of County Government while also ensuring we continue to focus on initiatives outlined in Marathon County’s Strategic Plan.

To view Marathon County’s Strategic plan, click here.

Q. So, what does a Deputy County Administrator do?

In general, a Deputy County Administrator is a key member of the team and plays an integral and supportive role in directing and coordinating the delivery of county services. In Marathon County, that also means that I am responsible for providing leadership and coordination on the execution of the county’s strategic goals and ensuring the operationalization of the county’s strategic plan. My primary focus is on our internal service departments such as Employee Resources, Finance, and Facilities, to name a few. In addition, I also assist the Administrator, County Board members, and Department Heads in all other areas of the county as needed.

Q. What interested you in working for Marathon County?

I was interested in working here because it provides me with the opportunity to continue along a career path in a world that I enjoy. I strongly believe in what counties do and want to help the public and others fully appreciate their local government(s). Every county will have its issues to overcome, but everything I learned about Marathon County while working in my previous role in Portage County was very positive. I know that working here will help me to improve, learn, and grow as an individual and as a professional. I’m grateful for the opportunity to serve here.

Chris speaking at The White House about Farm Infrastructure and Market Development. (Photo provided by subject.)

Q. What is the most surprising thing you’ve learned since taking the position?

The most surprising thing is how much time and effort is put into cultivating the workplace culture here. That is a challenge anywhere, and while most workplaces try to do this in some form or fashion, it’s really nice to see that there’s an ongoing, collective effort that I’ve stepped into and will now do my best to play a constructive part in.

 Q. When you’re not at work, what do you like to do in your free time?

When not at work, 99% of my time is spent with my family. Our farm is in its 13th year, and while we necessarily do less these days than in years past, it’s still something that’s a part of our lives and operating the farm and maintaining our property is something we all participate in. We also take several camping trips each year where we will hike, boat, swim, bike, fish, and experience all that the great state of Wisconsin has to offer.

Chris enjoying a hike with his daughter Eleanora, son Arlan, and wife Maria. (Photo provided by subject.)

* * *

I’ve really enjoyed working with Chris in the short time he’s been on our County Administration team. The leadership and unique perspectives he brings to issues facing today’s county governments, will no doubt be valuable to Marathon County as we navigate the ever-changing world we live in.

I invite you to schedule a time to come by the Marathon County Administration office to meet Chris by emailing him at chris.holman@co.marathon.wi.us.

Marathon_County_Administrator_Lance_LeonhardLance Leonhard

Marathon County Administrator

Lance Leonhard began his career in Marathon County Government in the Office of Corporation Counsel. He then served as Deputy Administrator and currently serves as the Marathon County Administrator. Lance’s career in public service has spanned more than a decade, having worked for the federal government as a law clerk on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit and for the state of Wisconsin as an Assistant District Attorney. Outside of work, you’re likely to find Lance spending time with his family, traveling, teeing off on a local golf course, or sitting around a campfire with friends.  Email Lance Leonhard

You might also like…


Please email our Editorial Board with your comments, suggestions, and article ideas.

And if you spot a typo or an inaccuracy, please contact us so we can fix it. Thanks!