February 10, 2022

A Roadmap for Our Next City Manager

We’ve made hiring Bellaire’s next City Manager a top priority early in this new Council term, and through our first month in office we’re well on our way.  We’ve selected an executive search firm to assist us in identifying and recruiting qualified candidates, and we’ll soon be kicking things off with them.  But looking beyond the hiring process, we also have some other work to do if we are to give our next City Manager—and ourselves—the best chance at success.

For him or her to be able to hit the ground running, we'll need to have established where we’re going.  Council sets the overall vision and policy direction, which the City Manager and staff are then charged with implementing.  We’ve taken an important first step, starting this term with a professionally facilitated planning session in which we worked on refining our governance model, and on developing our priorities, strategies and goals as a Council.

Continuing that emphasis, and with the caveat they’re still in draft form and haven’t yet been formally adopted, I organized this year’s State of the City Address around the Strategic Focus Areas we’ve come up with:  Community, Governance, Infrastructure, Public Safety, Quality of Life, and Land Use and Zoning.

In my address I talked about the unusually high number of staff vacancies we're currently experiencing, and what we’re doing to get those positions filled.  And I shared with you some of the highlights of the past year within each of our Strategic Focus Areas.  These are our guiding principles for the organization moving forward, and will help ensure the staff are aligned with Council’s policy direction when our next City Manager arrives.

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