Nick Pegueros, whose "involuntary resignation" as the Portola Valley Town Manager was announced Aug. 12, has been named the interim administrative services director in Menlo Park, City Manager Alex McIntyre announced Aug. 25.
Mr. Pegueros will partially fill the role left vacant by Starla Jerome-Robinson's recent retirement. Ms. Jerome-Robinson was assistant city manager as well as administrative services director, but Mr. Pegueros will not take on the assistant city manager role. He will coordinate human resources, finance and information technology services, according to Mr. McIntyre.
Mr. Pegueros' resignation as the Portola Valley town manager was announced by the Portola Valley Town Council in a prepared statement on Aug. 12, saying that "at the request of Nick Pegueros" the council "requested the involuntary resignation of the Town Manager and the Manager resigned, effective immediately."
Mr. McIntyre said he had spoken to Mr. Pegueros about the circumstances of his resignation from the Portola Valley position. "I am aware of Nick's situation in Portola Valley and none of it has to do with his ability to do the job I need to have him do," Mr. McIntyre said.
"He has explained it to me and I have had his explanation affirmed by a separate source," he said.
"I don't know the details of why the Portola Valley council did what it did and that's not my business," Mr. McIntyre said. Mr. McIntyre served as town administrator for Portola Valley from 1997 to 2000.
Mr. McIntyre said that with the recent loss of three high-level city administrators, including Public Works Director Jesse Quirion, Assistant City Manager Starla Jerome-Robinson and Finance Director Drew Corbett, "I need help."
"I am happy about my appointment of Nick," he said. "For Nick it's a trial run, he gets to test us out; we get to test him out."
Mr. Pegueros was hired on a contract that will expire at the end of the calendar year, with an option for renewal if both parties agree, Mr. McIntyre said. Mr. Pegueros' salary is approximately $170,000 a year. He began working for the city on Aug. 25.
The city also announced that Clay Curtin will become the interim finance director. Mr. Curtin has been assistant to the city manager since 2013. He had also worked in Southern California for the cities of West Covina and Manhattan Beach and has a bachelor's degree from Washburn University and a master's degree from the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs at Syracuse University.
Mr. McIntyre said that while Mr. Curtin has a "limited background" in finance, he is "a good manager." He will be reporting to Mr. Pegueros, who has an extensive background in finance, Mr. McIntyre said.
In addition to serving as town manager in Portola Valley, Mr. Pegueros was finance and administrative services director in Los Altos Hills and assistant finance director for the city of San Bruno. He has a bachelor's degree from Columbia University and a master's degree from the University of Washington.