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Regas returns to small-town roots: City administrator voted in at Blackduck City Council meeting

A new face has been welcoming visitors of City Hall since the beginning of February.

After Karin Elhard announced her resignation from city administrator in early November, the Blackduck City Council held two rounds of interviews in December and January.

Christina Regas, an Ely native, was the most impressive candidate, officials said and was voted in at the regular city council meeting on Monday.

Regas has a strong background in retail management and was most recently employed at OfficeMax in Bemidji.

She has been working for the company since it opened locally in 1999 until just this past month. “I was there when they were laying the tile and I just saw them pull it all up,” Regas laughed.

Her role as store manager was to run a profitable store, which covered the gamut of controlling costs, promoting and training staff and all that it takes to keep a business running on a corporate level, she said.

Regas first received her associate of arts degree at Vermilion Community College in Ely and then went on to graduate from the University of Hawaii at Manoa with a degree in fine arts in 1993.

Regas moved to Bemidji in 1996 when her husband, Demo Regas, who is now a conservation officer in Blackduck, got a full-time position there.

Demo’s work covers both districts in the Blackduck area, and required them to relocate their family here in May 2013.

When looking into the Blackduck School District for her five-year-old son, Regas saw it as a perfect fit.

“I wanted him to start school in something that was really community-based and he was going to be comfortable in,” she said. “And I didn’t hear any negative about the school district whatsoever.”

Regas said that she views the four-day school week in Blackduck as a bonus and that she also wants the small-town feel for herself when she isn’t working.  

Living in Blackduck and working in Bemidji wasn’t favorable for Regas. “I didn’t have enough time to dedicate myself to a place where my son is growing up and getting involved,” she said.

Much of the decision to take the job as city administrator was in her personal interest, but she also sees herself fit for the position.

“When I looked at the job description, I thought ‘I could do this’ so I gave it a shot,” Regas said.

She said that she will welcome input from anyone and enjoys talking and getting to know others.

“Change is always hard and I can understand where a lot of community members might be a little concerned for change, but I welcome it because I think I can give back to the community in a way,” Regas said. “I’m here to serve and that’s the biggest part of the job.”

Jillian Gandsey

Jillian Gandsey is the Multimedia Editor at the Bemidji Pioneer. She is an Iron Range native and a 2013 graduate of Bemidji State University. Follow Jillian on Twitter and Instagram @jilliangandsey. Contact her at 218-333-9786, 218-996-1216 or at 

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