Placer County supes still mulling new CEO selection

Three closed-door sessions this week and Supes are still looking
By: Gus Thomson, Journal Staff Writer
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AUBURN CA - As of late Friday afternoon, Placer County was still without a permanent CEO. The Placer County Board of Supervisors was apprised in early December by County Executive Officer Tom Miller that he would be retiring early in the new year. The search began in earnest in January for a replacement, with a field of about 50 candidates submitting resumes to the county by a March 16 deadline. Supervisors have spent three days this past week considering applications and interviewing a short list of candidates. Supervisor Kirk Uhler said the number of candidates was less than 12. On Tuesday, supervisors went into closed session to consider the list of candidates and spent Thursday interviewing them. Another closed session took place Friday between 10 a.m. and about noon for continuing interviews. County Counsel’s report out of the two closed sessions Thursday and Friday indicated no votes were taken. Nancy Nittler, Placer County personnel director, stated Friday that the search process will go on past Friday. The next scheduled meetings of the board are April 23 and 24. “The closed-session interview process for the new county executive officer is ongoing, and the Board of Supervisors has not yet made a hiring decision,” Nittler said. Miller retired in February and Holly Heinzen, the county’s assistant CEO, has been filling in on an interim basis. The county hired Rocklin’s Ralph Andersen & Associates for $30,000 in January to help with the candidate search. That work included conducting a survey to determine what qualities county residents felt would make a good CEO. The Journal has requested a copy of the report but it has yet to be made public. Auburn-area Supervisors Jennifer Montgomery and Jim Holmes were contacted mid-day Friday but had not responded to the Journal’s request for an interview by late Friday. The county executive officer is the chief administrative officer for the county. The CEO is responsible for the administration of the county and selects all appointed department heads, with the exception of the county counsel and personnel director. Miller served as CEO for seven years, earning a salary of $247,412 his final year and total compensation just short of $320,000. The county has a budget of $766 million and employs 2,300 people. The call for candidates through Andersen & Associates describes an “ideal candidate.” “The ideal candidate will be a confident, ‘hands-on,’ creative and innovative leader who is comfortable operating in a robust and dynamic environment,” the Andersen job profile states. “The ideal candidate will also be intuitive, perceptive and know when to lead and when to be supportive.”