In the wake of Atherton City Manager Jerry Gruber's resignation, Assistant City Manager Eileen Wilkerson has announced her resignation, effective next Thursday, Oct. 21, the day before Mr. Gruber steps down.
The City Council has called a special meeting for Saturday, Oct. 16, at 3 p.m. to address town management issues, including the search for a short-term town manager who would oversee Town Hall operations until an interim city manager is appointed in November. The meeting will be in the council chambers in the Town Center at 94 Ashfield Road.
Ms. Wilkerson, who was hired by Mr. Gruber in 2008, could not be reached for comment. A two-sentence announcement was sent out this morning (Oct. 15) by the deputy city clerk.
The situation has left Mayor Kathy McKeithen, Councilman Jim Dobbie and Mr. Gruber shifting into high gear to find a temporary manager for Town Hall after next Friday, Mr. Gruber's last day. The mayor and Mr. Dobbie have been working as an ad-hoc committee to find an interim city manager, but that appointment is likely to be weeks away.
"We have some good possibilities (for an immediate replacement) in mind," Ms. McKeithen said this morning. Mr. Gruber will be contacting those people identified as "good fits" to oversee Town Hall before the next temporary manager is found, she said.
But even though the person will be appointed for only a few weeks, she added, "We don't want a bad fit. ... (The appointment) won't be so extremely rushed that we make a bad decision."
Ms. McKeithen said that after candidates have been identified and have indicated a willingness to take on the short-term position, the council will meet in closed session to make a decision. "It will be the council's choice, not just the (ad-hoc) committee's," she said.
Meanwhile, Atherton continues its search for an interim city manager who will oversee the town's business until a recruitment process finds a permanent manager. The town has set a 5 p.m. Oct. 29 deadline for applications for the interim post, and officials hope to have someone in place in that position by Nov. 8 or soon after.
After Mr. Gruber announced his resignation late last month, the council decided to appoint an interim manager to allow the town to take its time in finding a permanent city manager in a process that will include appointing a citizens committee to help interview the council-chosen finalists among candidates.