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Dave Olson, Published January 25 2013

West Acres manager to leave job after 14 years

FARGO – Rusty Papachek, who became general manager of the West Acres Shopping Center in 1999, said Friday he will leave the job at the end of March.

“It’s just me needing a change right now,” said Papachek, adding that while he views the step as a positive one, he will miss the relationships he has made at the mall.

“Honestly, it’s going to be tough,” he said.

Papachek said the $18 million remodeling project launched shortly after his start as general manager, which included the creation of the mall’s current food court, probably ranks as the highlight of his tenure.

“Even now – the food court has been there 11 years – people comment how great the food court is,” Papachek said. “I think it kind of shaped West Acres.”

Papachek, who turns 50 next month and plans to remain in Fargo, said he has some ideas about what he may pursue next, but he’s leaving his options “wide open.”

He added he’s hopeful his next career will be “something that is still dealing with people.”

Readers can reach Forum reporter Dave Olson at (701) 241-5555