Almanac

News - May 22, 2013

City clerk leaving Menlo Park

by Sandy Brundage

Menlo Park needs to break out the recruitment ads once again. City Clerk Margaret Roberts gave two-weeks' notice that her last day will be May 24.

Ms. Roberts told the Almanac she is going to the city of Hercules to serve as director of administrative services. The position comes with expanded responsibilities, she said, as she will be a member of the executive team, unlike in Menlo Park, and she's looking forward to being able to partner with the executive staff.

Rumor has it that meetings in Hercules end much earlier, so one can hazard a guess that Ms. Roberts won't miss the many post-midnight discussions she's attended over nearly five years in Menlo Park. But she is leaving some valued people behind. "I will miss the friendships I have made in Menlo Park," she said. "The council has been supportive and I will miss them more than words can express."

The feeling is mutual. Veteran council member Rich Cline commented that being city clerk is much harder than it looks. "Margaret has gracefully acted as the public interface for the city and has spent many long nights at the center of the storm administrating meetings and juggling the community needs for information and access," he said.

"When you consider some of the critical issues facing this city during her tenure, including one of the deepest economic slumps in city history, internal investigations and disclosure debates, along with the shifting landscape across our great city, I am grateful that it was Margaret in that city clerk seat. We will miss her."

First-term council member Ray Mueller said he was happy for her, but sad for the city. "There is irony in the fact that she is moving to a place called Hercules, as she has been doing the day-to-day heavy lifting for city councils for years. Her kindness and professionalism will be missed."

Other notable departures: Earlier this year, Finance Director Carol Augustine and Cmdr. Lacey Burt, who retired; Chief of Police Bryan Roberts and Engineering Services Manager Matt Oscamou in 2012; Public Works Director Kent Steffens in 2011 and Business Development Manager Dave Johnson, City Manager Glen Rojas and Personnel Director Glen Kramer, who all retired between 2011 and 2010.

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