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Vale gets new city manager

Russell Kirkpatrick will take over as Vale city manager in March. (Submitted photo)

VALE – When Russell Kirkpatrick heard about the open city manager job in Vale, he wasn’t sure where the town was.

But he knew one thing: he wanted to step into a city manager position somewhere soon.

Kirkpatrick, 63, was in Yerington, Nevada, finishing up an assistant city manager internship last fall when his boss, City Manager Robert Switzer, made an announcement.

“I got the job for you,” he said, filling in Kirkpatrick on the slot in Vale.

Kirkpatrick, from Bentonville, Arkansas, said he was intrigued.

It turned out Switzer knew something of Malheur County. He had lived in Vale as a youth and his stepfather lives in Ontario.

“I know the town and you’ll love . . .