Frank Oviedo is returning to Santa Clarita as assistant city manager under Ken Striplin, officials confirmed Monday.
Oviedo, 42, worked for the city of Santa Clarita as a management analyst from 1997 to 2002. In 2009 he was hired as the first city manager of the city of Wildomar, which is located between Lake Elsinore and Murrieta in Riverside County.
Wildomar incorporated as a city in 2008. The 2010 Census showed a population of 32,176. By comparison, the latest annexation pushed Santa Clarita’s population above 203,000.
“It was a tough decision but in the end, having (relatives) in the Santa Clarita Valley tipped the scale,” Oviedo told the North County Times, the area’s local newspaper, explaining his decision to give up the No. 1 spot in Wildomar for the No. 2 spot in Santa Clarita.
Oviedo gradated from Clovis High School in 1988 and earned a bachelor’s degree in sociology from Fresno State University in 1994. He completed graduate studies at Arizona State University in Tempe, earning a master’s degree in public administration in 1997 before coming to Santa Clarita the first time. He’s married to a 1995 Hart High graduate, Erin Lillibridge (UCLA 1999), who was in the first 6th grade class to graduate from Valencia Valley Elementary School and now works for the California Department of Finance. They have a 6-year-old daughter and a 4-year-old son who starts kindergarten in the fall.
Between Santa Clarita and Wildomar, Oviedo served as deputy city manager of Elk Grove in northern California from 2002 to 2009. He’d been recruited to that city by another ex-Santa Clarita staffer, John Danielson, who was Elk Grove’s city manager at the time.
Oviedo earned a base salary of $179,000 in Wildomar, according to a report in the North County Times.
His future salary in Santa Clarita isn’t yet known. Striplin’s base salary is $220,000; presumably it would be less than that. City officials were preparing to discuss the decision more fully Tuesday, but by way of background, Striplin has sole hiring and firing authority over his staff, so Striplin would have been the one to hire Oviedo to fill the position that Striplin previously held under Santa Clarita’s last city manager, Ken Pulskamp.
No. 3 in the chain of command is the deputy city manager, Darren Hernandez; then come the department heads, in no particular order: Robert Newman in Public Works, Rick Gould in Parks and Tom Cole in Planning.
City of Santa Clarita Press Release, Tuesday 12/4/2012:
New City Manager Ken Striplin announced his new Assistant City Manager, bringing a familiar face back to City Hall with the hiring of Frank Oviedo who worked for the City from 1997-2002.
Oviedo is currently the city manager for the City of Wildomar, California where he has worked since 2009. Prior to that, he was the Deputy City Manager for the City of Elk Grove, California from 2002-2009, where he also worked as the assistant to the city manager.
“Frank is bringing us 15 years of experience in city government with a number of successes. During his career, he has worked in every city department in three cities, with a steady progression of management responsibilities in local government. He will be a great fit for Santa Clarita,” commented Ken Striplin.
While in Santa Clarita, Oviedo worked as a management analyst for the parks and recreation department, as well as serving as interim parks superintendent and as a management analyst in the City’s finance department. As Deputy City Manager and assistant to the City Manager in Elk Grove, he worked on the city’s budget, as well as with human resources, the police department, led various contract negotiations including complex trash and transit contracts, and with the City’s old town revitalization project.
Oviedo has both administrative and development services oversight experience, developing Wildomar’s first comprehensive economic development work plan and creating policies encouraging economic growth by creatively phasing commercial projects in order to jump start pre-recession approved plans. Also in Wildomar, he implemented a new finance accounting system for better accountability and long term financial health.
“I am very excited to be returning to Santa Clarita. The leadership in Santa Clarita is well-known for excellence and innovation; Santa Clarita is absolutely a leader in the State—the City everyone wants to emulate for its successes,” said Frank Oviedo.