WAXAHACHIE — After almost four hours in executive session during a specially called meeting of the Waxahachie City Council, Michael Scott was named the interim city manager for the City of Waxahachie.
The Sept. 7 appointment comes roughly three weeks after four of the five city council members agreed to a separation agreement with then-city manager Paul Stevens during a specially called session on Aug. 25. The contract approved Thursday night will go before the full council Sept. 18.
“First of all, I am humbled because it is a big responsibility. The fact that the council would have confidence in me to pick up the torch and carry it forward is humbling,” Scott said. “I think that there are some great things we can do. I think that Waxahachie is poised for great things and I am excited to be apart of that.”
According to his profile on the city website, Scott began his career in 2002 as the downtown director and later assumed the position of director of planning for the City of Waxahachie. He then moved into his role as the assistant city manager in Jan. 2007 under Stevens.
Scott graduated from the University of Kansas with a bachelor degree in political science. He previously worked as a consultant with Deloitte & Touche. Scott and his wife, Karen, have two boys, Jonathan and Ian.
Scott stated is still considering submitting his application for the full-time position.
“I have given 15 years to this city and I have loved every bit of it. To be city manager as a permanent position would be just an incredible honor,” Scott stated. “There are a lot of great candidates out there that are going to want this position because Waxahachie is some place special. So I will be in good company if I throw my hat in the ring. I think I want to see how this interim period goes and engage the council to see if they want me to be a part of this process.”
Before the executive session began, the council heard a presentation from Strategic Governmental resources and its managing director of interim services and communications, Lori Philyaw.
“It is important that we know you so that we can find you the best city manager. We have the second largest job board for local government. At any given time we have 1,800 jobs listed,” Philyaw said. “We spend a lot of time with your council and your staff. We have a candidate vetting process to make sure that there are no surprises to you and your community. We make sure that your candidate understands your community.”
Philyaw noted that the staff at SGR comes from long careers in city government, which gives them a unique perspective.
According to the SGR website, the company specializes in executive recruitment, interim management, live training, online training, leadership development, assessment, consulting and various other services geared to promote innovation in local government.
If selected, Philyaw stated that SGR would highlight what makes the city exceptional to attract the right candidate. One tool used to accomplish this task is social media.
“Most organizations are using social media to recruit and to reach out to candidates. We have Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and we also have targeted job alerts that go out so that people are aware of this job,” Philyaw explained. “We will place ads in International City and Council Management Association and Texas City Management Association to reach those candidates.”
Philyaw noted that they have seen some great candidates while aiding other municipalities that include some up and comers and seasoned city managers that have embraced innovation. She added that the city has a lot to offer to attract a large number of candidates.
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