Findlay Mayor Mihalik prepares to leave "one of the best jobs in the country"
She was Findlay's first female mayor, and a University of Findlay All-GLIAC basketball player.
Lydia Mihalik has made Flag City USA home, making it that much harder to accept the call from Governor-elect Mike DeWine.
She will be tasked with creating jobs and building strong communities as the next head of the Development Services Agency.
"It was a very difficult decision because I really enjoy what I do here."
Elected in 2011, Mihalik had her hands full right off the bat.
She inherited a near $7 million deficit.
Findlay now is much more financially stable, and Mihalik says she always thinks back to her first three months in office.
"Really something that has motivated me since the very beginning is to ensure that this organization, as long as I'm around, doesn't get themselves into that situation again."
The Republican is a member of the U.S. Conference of Mayors, and she believes joining the Columbus staff at this time could help strengthen the bond between the governor's office and local government.
"When you tell someone that that's something you need to work on, you think it's important, and they say, 'well can you help me do that,' it makes sense to say yes I can." Because if it wasn't important, then why was I pushing and asking so hard for it?"
Stepping away with one year left in her second term, she had some simple advice for acting mayor Ron Monday, and whomever takes over the full-time duties.
"Trust your gut and do big things."
Mihalik previously turned down positions in Columbus, but decided now was the right time, and the right job.
"I've said several times that being mayor of the city of Findlay is one of the best jobs you could have in the country. It's been fun and I feel like I've been able to grow as a result of the community around me, but it was time."
Mihalik will be in Columbus Monday to be officially sworn into office. The county will accept applications for her replacement until the end of the month.