Lake Oswego Community
The City of Lake Oswego has a population of 38,215 and is a community rich with art, culture, historical resources, quality schools, vibrant business districts, and an abundance of activities and events for all ages.
Located in the northwestern corner of Clackamas County, on the banks of the scenic Willamette River and hugging the shore of a 405-acre lake, Lake Oswego is nestled among many of Oregon’s greatest attractions: Mount Hood, the Oregon Coast, the Columbia Gorge and nearby vineyards, farmlands, and forests. Lake Oswego is also ideally situated close to Oregon’s major metropolitan areas – just eight miles south of downtown Portland and about 40 miles north of the state capitol in Salem.
Lake Oswego is a community of well-respected residential neighborhoods and although the City is primarily residential, there is some light manufacturing and commercial development. Most of the businesses are located downtown near the Willamette River or in the Lake Grove business district and neighborhood. Commercial properties on Kruse Way, near the interstate highway, offer some of the most sought after Class A office space in the region.
The City of Lake Oswego values and supports education, recognizing that quality education is good for the social and economic interests of the community. Lake Oswego is proud that the schools consistently rate among the best in the state and are nationally recognized. Residents have access to a variety of high quality educational opportunities that provide for lifelong learning, including: the Lake Oswego School District (LOSD), private primary and secondary schools, and close proximity to Lewis and Clark College and Portland Community College Sylvania campus.
The City has a growing system of pathways around the community. Each loop is designed to connect neighborhoods with schools, parks, and commercial centers. These pathways are multi-use and shared by walkers, runners, bikers, and pets. There is a city-owned sports center and amphitheater on the Willamette River, a public swimming facility on the privately managed Oswego Lake, an 18-hole golf course, a working farm, and an indoor tennis center. These amenities, managed by the City’s Parks and Recreation Department, help promote Lake Oswego as a place to live where you play.
The City sponsors numerous community events throughout the year. The Farmers’ Market, Summer Concerts, Movies in the Park, 4th of July Celebration, Festival of the Arts, and Tree Lighting Ceremony are some of the free events available to the public. Be entertained, celebrate with your neighbors, and meet new friends in Lake Oswego.
Inside City Hall
The City of Lake Oswego operates a council-manager form of government, which vests policy authority in a volunteer city council and administrative authority for day-to-day operations in an appointed, professional City Manager. The City Council is the governing body of Lake Oswego and the citizens elect members at large. The Mayor and Councilors are elected to four-year terms. The Charter provides that the term of office for the Mayor and Councilors not exceed a period of eight consecutive years. At least three council positions are up for election every two years.
The City of Lake Oswego is a full service city providing excellent services through the following departments: City Manager’s Office; City Attorney; Engineering; Facilities Management; Finance; Fire; Human Resources; Information Technology; Library; Municipal Court; Parks and Recreation; Planning and Building Services; Police; Public Works; and the Redevelopment Agency. The City employs 302 full time and 43.3 part time employees with a 2018-19 adopted budget of $211.4 million with a general fund of $74.5 million.
The City Manager is the full time Chief Administrative Officer of the City and is responsible for the effective and efficient administration of the City, assuming full management responsibility, leadership, and accountability for all City operations, including direct or indirect supervision of all employees. The City Manager conducts or coordinates, through department heads, departmental strategic planning efforts and other studies of City services to ensure they are provided in the most effective manner. The City Manager serves at the pleasure of the Council and is accountable for achieving policies, goals, and objectives established by the Council.
The City Manager performs all duties as provided in the Charter and ordinances of the City of Lake Oswego. The City Manager directs the development and implementation of the City’s goals, objectives, policies, and priorities and routinely provides advice and assistance to the Mayor and Council on a wide variety of issues. The City Manager prepares and submits a proposed City budget for the ensuing fiscal year, properly administers the budget as adopted, and keeps the Council advised of the financial condition and needs of the City. The City Manager is also responsible for enforcing and administering all City laws, ordinances, policies, and regulations.
Lake Oswego Priorities
- Develop and maintain positive relationships with the Mayor and City Council. Establish trust, drive effective communication, and provide sound guidance to execute on the 2019 City Council Goals ensuring Lake Oswego remains a welcoming and inclusive community.
- Develop an understanding of the organization, its current culture, structure, staffing, and labor relations. Prioritize projects and initiatives and continue to encourage collaboration to meet the growing demands of the community.
- Continue to drive financial stability. Develop sustainable budgets, maintain fiscal accountability, and plan for the long-term. Work to understand financial impacts of council goals, projects, and staffing to balance the fiscal reality with the City’s needs.
- Formalize programs and create opportunities for employee development, training, and succession planning with a clear focus on retention, building diversity, and providing outstanding services.
- Identify Smart Cities initiatives. Embrace innovation, leverage data, and increase efficiencies to ensure Lake Oswego is a place that uses technology to create improved opportunities for everyone.
- Support the City’s Diversity Task Force. Promote respect for diversity, equity, and inclusion as an organizational value through leadership and the decision-making process.
- Embrace the Lake Oswego community and quickly establish oneself as a visible figure. Develop positive relationships and partnerships that not only encourage, but increase public participation and engagement.
- In partnership with the Mayor, City Council, City staff, and key stakeholders, implement and successfully execute on a wide variety of projects, including: a new City Hall, Foothills redevelopment, North Anchor mixed-use, Mercantile Center mixed-use, Southwest Employment Area, and Boones Ferry Road improvements. Focus on sustainability, while preserving the character and livability of Lake Oswego.
- Prioritize planning for recognized deficiencies in affordable housing and transit. Collaborate with the Mayor, City Council, and City staff to actively identify and determine the most effective opportunities to integrate a variety of housing options.
- Develop an understanding of the City’s infrastructure and maintenance needs. Proactively move forward with planning and project prioritization with a focus on maintaining a connected and livable community.
- With a $30 million parks bond on the ballot in May, collaborate with the Mayor, City Council, Parks Board, and Parks and Recreation staff to strategize and prioritize projects that would improve neighborhood parks, acquire land for future parks and open space, and identify bicycle and pedestrian trails.
- Promote a more direct and proactive effort around economic development. Embrace Lake Oswego’s assets and leverage existing resources including the City’s dedication to arts and culture, award winning schools and educational opportunities, strong property values, and an intelligent, active, and engaged community to identify and attract businesses, entrepreneurs, and talent.
- In partnership with the City of Portland, continue to make progress on the Wastewater Treatment Plant Project. Consider the proper timing, planning, funding, and community support to determine how to proceed.
The new City Manager has the ability to quickly understand the values of Lake Oswego and is comfortable working in a community accustomed to high quality municipal services and a strong tradition of community involvement. The ideal candidate brings a fresh, yet experienced voice and perspective to City initiatives with a proven ability to move projects forward. A true community ambassador, the successful candidate leads by example and is fully invested in the City’s success.
The City Manager brings highly developed communication skills and maintains objectivity in working with elected officials. The successful candidate has a strong history of developing effective relationships and partners with the Mayor and City Council to provide sound advice and guidance as necessary. The ideal candidate is confident, yet humble, and diplomatic with a willingness to push back as needed.
A strategic thinker, the City Manager easily sees the big picture and long-term vision for the City. In addition, the preferred candidate understands the importance of building off a solid foundation and works to ensure infrastructure and service fundamentals are sound. The City Manager values and appreciates partnerships at all levels, including public-private partnerships. With a financial mindset, the successful candidate has an appreciation for lean management and continuous improvement and uses data and analytics to drive decisions. Additionally, the City Manager embraces technology and innovation and utilizes both to drive efficiency.
The City Manager naturally develops positive relationships, establishes a high level of trust, and enjoys being an active member of the community. The preferred candidate maintains an understanding of the issues affecting Lake Oswego and leverages that knowledge to drive decisions. With a belief in open government and civic engagement, the City Manager encourages participation, welcomes input, connects with the community, and is effective in garnering public support for controversial projects. An approachable leader, the successful candidate has a history of engaging in effective, meaningful communication with business and community leaders, key stakeholders, and regional partners and routinely demonstrates an ability to build consensus and guide others to decisions.
An effective leader, the City Manager models behaviors expected throughout the organization, including initiative, commitment to high quality work, and enthusiasm for public service. The successful candidate employs a leadership style that invites participation and gathers input, but at the end of the day is decisive and results-oriented. The City Manager has a strong background in managing and empowering employees and believes in professional development, retention, and succession planning. The ideal candidate is fair, establishes clear expectations, and holds others accountable. The City Manager believes in work-life balance and above all, has a good sense of humor.
Ideally ten years of progressively responsible experience in municipal government, including at least seven years of administrative or leadership responsibility. A successful track record as a City Manager, Deputy City Manager, or senior Department Director with exposure to the full range of municipal services, or a similar role in an equivalent type of organization, in order to successfully fulfill the requirements of the City is preferred. Strong managerial experience and the ability to work closely with the City Council are essential. A sound financial background with a strong understanding of budgets and financial management is required. An exceptional ability to develop effective partnerships is required, as is successful, prior experience working with the business community.
A Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration, Public Administration, or similar field, or an equivalent combination of education and experience enabling the incumbent to perform the essential functions of the position. A Masters of Public Administration, Business Administration, or Urban Planning is highly desirable. Ideally, the City Manager will reside within the City of Lake Oswego.