The Ridgecrest City Council will host a community forum on Wednesday, August 30 from 5:30 – 7:30 p.m. at the Kerr McGee Community Center to gather input and discuss issues related to hiring our new City Manager. While all qualified local candidates are encouraged to apply, the Council also expressed a strong desire to expand our search in order to create a larger group of qualified candidates for consideration. Mayor Peggy Breeden and Councilman Wallace Martin serve on the recruiting committee and have voiced the importance of selecting the right person for this top position. The City Manager presides over all six of the major Departments of the City including Administrative Services, Police, Parks and Recreation, Finance, Community Development and Public Works. The City Manager is the top post in our local government. According to Councilman Wallace Martin, “I think that our new manager should be able to enhance revenue, transparently manage expenses, and balance our budget. Our eventual goal is to be a model “smart city” using the latest technologies and proven management techniques. We need a strong, motivational leader with a very positive attitude. If we want new results, we must be willing to try new approaches.”
The Mathis Group encourages business leaders and stakeholders to speak up. According to Mathis, “It’s important that we hear from the people who routinely interact with the City Manager in conducting business such as developers, Realtors, Chamber Members, business leaders, contractors, and community citizens. We want people to tell us what they think is important.” Specifically, Mathis asks the public to think about four main questions prior to the meeting and asks them to be ready to discuss:
- Lessons learned from past City Manager Leadership?
- Main two issues facing the City that requires City Manager Leadership and Council support?
- Two or three traits of a new City Manager that Council should look for in a good City Manager?
- How do we ensure continuity – and not turnover?
Ridgecrest City Council members are invited to attend but will not speak. The forum will be moderated by Dr. Bill Mathis. This forum is only the first phase of a multi-stage approach. Mathis has already conducted personal interviews with each City Councilman to get their input.
The important job of executive search was solicited via city requests for proposals from numerous professional recruiting agencies in California. Mathis was chosen. The Mathis Group is owned and operated by Dr. Bill Mathis and his wife Janice. The company is located in both Napa Valley and Rancho Cucamonga, California. Dr. Mathis holds a Ph.D. in Clinical/Industrial Psychology. Janice holds an M.A. Degree in Human Behavior and a B.A. Degree in Behavioral Sciences and she served as Deputy City Manager for one of the largest cities in Los Angeles County. Together they provide targeted recruiting services, site analysis, strategic planning and change management strategies for public and private sectors. For over forty years Mathis Group has recruited and consulted for special districts, school districts, police departments, city managers, elected officials and utility/water districts across California, as well as out of State.