City Council Selects Interim City Manager and Executive Search Firm

Following the announced resignation of City Manager Matt Baumgarten, the City Council has appointed Nate Geinzer to serve as Interim City Manager and selected GovHR USA/MGT to lead a national search for Baumgarten’s replacement. 

Geinzer and GovHR/MGT were approved by the City Council during its April 1 meeting following recommendations from an ad hoc committee of the Council.

Geinzer will join the City on April 8 and work alongside Baumgarten, whose tenure ends April 19. As Interim City Manager, Geinzer will oversee the day-to-day operations of all City departments and staff. 

Interim City Manager Nate Geinzer
Over his nearly 20 years of local government experience, Geinzer has managed multiple executive transitions. He served as City Manager for the City of Brighton for six years, managing a budget of nearly $33 million and leading a team of 57 employees while successfully navigating a comprehensive organizational transition following the departure of the 26-year manager incumbent. During his tenure, he revitalized the management team and culture and improved service delivery and fiscal sustainability. 

Before that, Geinzer worked as Assistant to the City Manager and Management Assistant at the City of Farmington Hills. He previously served as Manager for the City of Berkley’s Downtown Development Authority, managing projects for the DDA Board, overseeing diverse initiatives and fostering community development. In that role, he also created the updated Berkley DDA Development and Tax Increment Financing Plan, driving economic growth and revitalization strategies.

He most recently served as interim City Manager for the City of Traverse City for eight months, working with City staff and elected officials to navigate multiple complex challenges, including filling department head vacancies and homelessness, among many others.

“By guiding municipalities through the intricate paths of governance, I help create budgetary strategies that align with elected priorities, ensure financial stability and foster resilient and empowered teams,” Geinzer said. “I strive to enhance services, establish strategic partnerships, and secure critical resources to create an environment where local governments can thrive. My passion for inclusive leadership, sustainable progress and enduring community vitality remains a driving force in my work.”

Search Process
GovHR/MGT is a nationally respected leader in public sector management consulting and technology services with a long track record in support of state, local and education clients. It will work with the City Council, City staff and community members to develop a candidate profile for its national recruitment efforts. 

The City Council values community feedback and plans to engage residents and other stakeholders during the City Manager search process. As outlined in the City Charter, the City Council will vote on who the next City Manager will be.

Information on the City Manager recruitment timeline and community engagement opportunities will be announced on the City’s website and social media as well as in the newsletter and other communications once finalized. 

Ad Hoc Committee
An ad hoc committee of the City Council met on March 25 to discuss the recruitment and applicant process to fill the City Manager position. Members of this committee were appointed by Mayor Bridget Dean and include Mayor Pro Tem Ross Gavin and Councilmembers Greg Patterson and Jessica Vilani.

The committee convened in a publicly noticed meeting, where it reviewed proposals from executive search firms as well as resumes of interim City Managers provided by Michigan Municipal Executives. The committee unanimously approved recommending the City Council consider GovHR USA/MGT for the City Manager search firm given its vast network, reputation and familiarity with Berkley’s geographic area The committee also unanimously approved recommending the City Council consider Nate Geinzer for the interim City Manager role, noting his vast experience in local government and executive transitions. 

You can read more about the ad hoc committee meeting and recommendations in the April 1 City Council meeting packet.


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