HEALDSBURG, CA — Healdsburg has a new city manager. Jeffrey Kay, San Leandro city manager, was appointed to the position Monday by the Healdsburg City Council.
Kay's first day in his new role is Jan. 1. Until then, Dave Kiff will continue serving as interim city manager.
In Kay's current position as city manager for the City of San Leandro in Alameda County, he leads 435 employees in a full-service city of 90,000 residents that operates on an annual budget of $190 million.
A national search to fill the top role for the city of Healdsburg began in July when City Manager David Mickaelian stepped down to take a new position in the private sector.
While there were several strong candidates, Healdsburg Mayor Evelyn Mitchell said it became clear Kay was the right choice for Healdsburg.
"Please join me in welcoming Jeff to our City," Mitchell said in a news release Tuesday. "He has a tremendously diverse background and range of experience in the areas important to our community such as economic development, affordable housing and community engagement.
"He has a strong financial background and budget experience, which is so critical right now with our revenue shortfall due to COVID-19. Jeff values collaborative teamwork and has experience building strong professional teams. He also partnered with a committee of residents to adopt and implement a bike and pedestrian master plan, which is music to our ears."
Healdsburg Vice Mayor Shaun McCaffery noted that Kay's development experience will serve him well.
"Jeff's strong background in community development will help Healdsburg navigate ongoing and upcoming area-planning and master-planning efforts," McCaffery said.
Kay has served the City of San Leandro since 2009, first as a business development analyst, then in increasingly senior roles before stepping into the city manager position in January 2018. His accomplishments include helping to develop San Leandro’s fiber-optic network, a public arts program, and voter-approved revenue measures.
He earned a bachelor's degree from Vassar College and a master's degree in city and regional planning from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
Kay said he looks forward to partnering with the community, the council, and the staff to help achieve the city's priorities, including the continued development of affordable housing.
"I am thrilled to have been appointed to serve as Healdsburg's next city manager, and I'm grateful to the mayor and city council for granting me this opportunity," Kay said. "Healdsburg is an amazing place and I'm excited to get there, get to know the community, and join the City team."
According to a city staff report, Kay will earn an annual base salary of $251,504 as Healdsburg city manager. He will also receive an annual contribution of $19,500 from the city toward his deferred compensation plan.
Also on Monday, the City Council approved payments totaling $13,745.31 to Bob Murray & Associates for handling the city manager recruitment.