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UPDATE: Santa Clarita names Striplin new city manager

Posted: August 30, 2012 6:24 p.m.
Updated: August 31, 2012 10:31 a.m.

Santa Clarita City Council members selected Assistant City Manager Ken Striplin to take over the city’s administration on Thursday after interviewing him for the job vacated at the end of the year by longtime City Manager Ken Pulskamp.

The 4-1 decision was announced following a closed session of the council during which members interviewed only Striplin for the job.

The decision is contingent on a final contract being hammered out between the council and Striplin and that contract receiving council approval.

Pulskamp announced his resignation, effective the end of the year, on Monday.

City Councilman TimBen Boydston cast the lone dissenting vote, although he said it had nothing to do with Striplin’s qualifications.

“I just feel that a more thorough process would have made sure we got the very best candidate available,” Boydston said of his vote.

During an open council session that followed the closed-door interview and deliberations, Boydston noted that he was on a citizens committee that selected Pulskamp following a nationwide search for a city manager. Pulskamp, too, was assistant city manager before he took over the reins of the city 10 years ago.

Pulskamp’s selection had the resounding support of the citizens committee, helping to assure residents they were getting the best possible administrative leadership, Boydston said.

But Mayor Frank Ferry defended Thursday’s decision to promote Striplin.

“I have a real fear that going through that (national search) process, that another community would see his value” and hire him away from Santa Clarita, Ferry said. “We didn’t want to lose him as a potential candidate while we were going through the process.”

The other three council members praised the selection for the continuity Striplin would bring to city administration.
Striplin has been an employee of Santa Clarita for 17 years and assistant city manager for the past eight. He is also currently manager of the city’s personnel office.

With a master of public administration from California State University, Northridge, and a doctorate in organizational leadership from Pepperdine University, Striplin has worked at City Hall in several different positions.



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