New city manager chosen

Doug Redmond is the choice to replace retiring Portales City Manager Tom Howell.

The Portales City Council voted unanimously Tuesday night to approve Redmond as the city's new manager. Redmond will resign as Roosevelt County Community Development Corp. director on June 30 and will start with the city on July 1 at an $82,000 salary.

Howell, who served as city manager for five years, will stay with the city until September in a yet-to-be determined role.

"I'm very excited. I'm looking forward to working with the mayor and the council," said Redmond before going to get a celebratory pizza. "It's a good group of people; they're very conscientious about the work they do. They're looking out for the future of the citizens."

Redmond was announced as one of the two finalists at the council's last meeting in May, a number culled from about 20 applicants. Mayor Sharon King attributes experience, knowledge of the area and character in helping make the decision to hire Redmond.

"Mr. Redmond's background has prepared him well for the position," King said. "He's held other positions as a city and county manager so we felt comfortable that he'd be able to step in and hit the ground running."

Redmond has been in Portales about 10 months since accepting his position as RCCDC director. His background prior to moving to New Mexico includes experience as a city and county manager for 10 years in his home state of Georgia.

Redmond said working as RCCDC director has given him advantage to get to know the area and will also help in decision making because he says he wants to continue to see the area grow.

"I have been so involved in it and doing (economic development) here has given me a big advantage coming from that background," Redmond said. "I think I have a pretty broad spectrum of knowledge. The goal is continue to find ways to grow Portales."

King said his familiarity with the council has made her and other councilors comfortable in working with Redmond.

"We look forward to working with him to move the city forward," King said. She added that she sits on the RCCDC board, so she will help begin the search to find Redmond's replacement as director

Redmond said he will also help with the RCCDC search, but can hardly wait to serve the city.

"I'm looking forward to getting guidance, meeting with department heads and defining issues," Redmond said. "I want to eliminate any barriers so that we're performing to the fullest capabilities."

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