Charlottesville City Council Shares Background on City Manager Candidates (Includes current DeSoto CM)

Charlottesville, Virginia - After months of closed-door meetings, Charlottesville City Council is lifting the curtain and shedding some light on the three finalists competing to serve as the next city manager.

On Tuesday, March 5, the names of those three candidates were released, and on Wednesday night the public will be invited to sit in on the next round of interviews.

The city says this sort of public interview process is pretty unprecedented, but councilors felt the need to offer transparency to the community about who they will ultimately vote to take over the seat at the dais that Mike Murphy currently holds on an interim basis.

“Hiring a city manager is one of the most important decisions that a council can make,” Councilor Heather Hill said.

After more than seven months, Charlottesville City Council has narrowed its search for the next city manager down to what city officials call three highly qualified candidates.

“They wouldn’t be at this point in the process, they would not have been selected by the executive recruiter and by council if they weren't qualified,” Brian Wheeler, the city’s communications director, said.

All three candidates have ties to central Virginia.

Michael Mallinoff, who most recently worked as the county administrator of Charles County, Maryland, attended the Weldon Cooper Center for Public Policy at the University of Virginia.

Theodore Voorhees is also a Weldon Cooper alumnus.

He's currently the county administrator for Powhatan County, Virginia.

And the third candidate, Tarron Richardson, served as the deputy director of Richmond from 2006 to 2009 and is currently the city manager of Desoto, Texas.

“Council has already had one round of interviews with the candidates that we’re now bringing forward to the public, and we’ve narrowed down to these three finalists,” Hill said.

On Wednesday, March 6, City Council will invite community members to sit in on the next round of interviews.

“I think this is pretty unusual for a city to go to this level to engage these candidates,” Wheeler said. “It’s really important for them to be transparent, to share their complete backgrounds, we don’t want any surprises as a city and our public doesn’t want any surprises.”

Following the interviews, candidates will host a two-hour meet-and-greet with the public where they’ll personally introduce themselves and answering any questions people may have.

“There’s certainly a demand for transparency and as much as this is certainly council’s decision ultimately, we want the community to have a chance to weigh in because this person is not going to just be the partner council is working with, but they’re going to be leading the city,” Hill said.

Download the applicants' resumes

Source: NBC29