Placer to start 2019 with new county counsel

Interim replacement hired after retirement
By: Gus Thomson, Reporter/Columnist
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Placer County starts the new year with an interim county counsel after the retirement of Gerald Carden.

Carden, who has worked in the County Counsel’s Office since 1988, is stepping down after six years as Placer’s top legal advisor. He had worked before that as chief deputy in the office for 17 years. He also served for two weeks as interim CEO for the county earlier this year.

The county Board of Supervisors has agreed to a one-year contract  with Karin Schwab to serve as interim county counsel between Jan. 1 and Dec. 31, 2019, at $100.88 an hour.

Plans are for the board to make a future decision whether or not to start recruitment efforts in the fall. Schwab currently works as chief deputy county counsel.

Carden’s retirement Monday will mark the end of a career with the county that started when he was hired in 1988. A 1980 graduate of UCLA Law School, he previously worked in both private practice and government service in Southern California.

“Jerry possessed an amazing recall of law, facts and historic professional details that enabled him to solve problems and advise clients,” a commendation adopted Dec. 18 by the Board of Supervisors reads. “Information that was not stored in his mind could usually be found in one of the many neatly placed stacks and piles on his desk.”

Carden was also praised for an “open-door policy” encouraging collaboration and sharing of ideas.

“Always willing to help, Jerry also advised multiple county executive officers and elected officials, consistently treating each of them with professionalism and respect,” the commendation reads.