Well, it certainly took the Scottsdale City Council long enough, but they appear to have found a terrific City Manager.
Former Casa Grande City Manager Jim Thompson is the chosen one, after three rounds and eighteen months of interviews.
The community will soon come to appreciate the erudite Thompson for his energy and purpose. He’s not one to belabor the bureaucratic journey. He’s a person that wants to get things done.
And you can tell he’s appreciative of being in Scottsdale. It’s a challenge. It’s a great city. It’s the big leagues.
One anecdote after Thompson got the job said it all. City wordsmithers had crafted a press release announcing his hiring. In presenting copy to their new boss they posited he could take as much time as needed to look it over and even get back to them the next day. Thompson’s reply? Go with it. Looks good. You know your job.
After enduring the last 18 months of the interim City Manager under whom morale lagged and the business community furrowed its brow Thompson’s conviction, command and lack of cowardice when it comes to making decisions is refreshing. The interim City Manager never understood politics. Thompson does. He understands democracy involves all different voices from all different walks and that a City Manager’s impact is not just based on being the smartest guy in the room, or a command of issues, but his standing among those whose voices count as much if not more than his or hers. Indeed, the interim City Manager was so incontinent on matters people and politics he thinks no one notices when he stacks important evaluation committees with acolytes from the one department he actually does know something about – water – or speaks inappropriately to his bosses, the City Council.
Thompson can’t start his post soon enough. While it officially doesn’t begin until January 8th every Scottsdalian should be appreciative of the holiday gift he represents.