Former Redmond deputy manager offered interim manager job

The city council voted 5-1 at its Nov. 24 meeting to offer the city's interim city manager job to Linda Herzog, former Redmond deputy city executive.

The council also hired Waldron and Co., an executive search firm in Seattle, to search for both a city manager and a public works director and to negotiate a contract with Herzog that will be reviewed at its Dec. 8 meeting.

Waldron also was hired to lead the council through sessions on team building, goal setting and developing a work plan. A contract for all those services will be negotiated later.

City Councilor Erik Erichsen voted "no," saying that it was not worthwhile nor productive for Waldron to lead the team building exercises.

City Councilor Walt Schubert said the team building and other sessions were an important part of the contract and needed to be included.

"It's high time we have a professional lead us," City Councilor Bill Huizinga said.

Following a brief presentation by Waldron representatives, the council met in executive session for about 30 minutes before deciding to hire the company.

Waldron vice president Dick Cushing, city manager of Olympia for 17 years, said the sessions would lay the groundwork for a positive start for the new manager such as ground rules for interaction between staff and council.

Cushing said he wanted to learn as much as he could about the city's issues and priorities, schedule the team building and other sessions then begin recruiting.

A realistic timeline is 90-120 days, so starting in February or March could mean getting someone in place by June, he said.

Cushing said he doesn't know enough about the issues surrounding the city's public works director position to make any description of that hiring process.

The interim city manager could work for either Waldron or the city directly depending upon circumstances such as the person's status in the state retirement system, Cushing said.

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