San Luis Obispo city manager accepts job in Santa Monica
–San Luis Obispo City Manager Katie Lichtig announced that Santa Monica City Manager Rick Cole has appointed her Chief Operating Officer/Assistant City Manager of the City of Santa Monica. Santa Monica is a progressive Southern California beach community with a current budget of almost $775 million and an engaged workforce of about 2,300 full-time staff. Lichtig was selected after a competitive national search and is returning to the city where she started her municipal service as a Senior Management Analyst in 1992.
Lichtig was City Manager in San Luis Obispo for more than 7.5 years. During her tenure as city manager, Lichtig helped the city weather the storm of the Great Recession, focused on enhancing knowledge and confidence in the use of Local Sales Tax (Measures Y and G) revenues which resulted in passage of the renewal measure by more than 70-percent of the voters in 2014, oversaw major infrastructure improvement (Los Osos Valley Road Overpass expansion and the new Skate Park), led the Coalition of Cities to help ensure the regional and local economy remains strong after the closure of the Diablo Canyon Power Plant, worked with community partners to fund construction of the 40 Prado Road Homeless Services Center and supported an organizational culture that valued collaboration, teamwork and caring for the community and each other.
“I have cherished my time serving the San Luis Obispo community,” said Lichtig. “Together we have solved the problems of today, envisioned a bright future and created life-long friendships… I am honored to have served this city alongside the dedicated, smart and kind staff. They are an amazing group of professionals who care very deeply about making this community better and more beautiful every day. I appreciate all that we have been through together and what we achieved. I will remember our work together with great affection.”
“Katie has made countless contributions to our city during her time as our City Manager,” Mayor Heidi Harmon stated. “I know I speak for the other City Council members, past and present when I say that we appreciate all of Katie’s talents and accomplishments during her time as City Manager. I particularly appreciate how essential your expertise has been during a time of transition with a majority new council. She has been a tireless advocate for the city, a strong leader of our staff. She also volunteers in many organizations in our community. We are disappointed to see her make this transition but we understand her desire to contribute to Santa Monica and return to the place she started her career in city management. The Council and Katie are committed to ensuring the transition of leadership is as smooth as possible and we have a strong team of dedicated staff so the city can continue to make progress on the many high priorities envisioned by the City Council.”
Santa Monica City Manager Rick Cole expressed great confidence in Lichtig’s ability and fit for this role. “I sought out Katie because I knew about her achievements and skills in our profession. After a rigorous process with stiff competition, Katie rose to the top. I am certain Katie is going to do great things in Santa Monica and I am looking forward to establishing a wonderful partnership with her as we create a 21st Century government.”
Lichtig’s last day working for the City of San Luis Obispo will be Sept. 28 and she will begin in her new role shortly thereafter.