David White Appointed City Manager
His employment contract will be considered at July 27 Council meeting
July 29, 2021
The Santa Monica City Council announced on Thursday that it has selected David White to serve as Santa Monica’s next city manager.
White’s employment contract – including an October 11 start date and salary – will be considered at the July 27 Council meeting, said city officials at last night’s special Council meeting. Last month, the Council offered the job to Rene Bobadilla but he turned it down just before contract negotiations, opting to remain at his current post of City Manager of Montebello.
White currently serves as deputy city manager for the City of Berkeley, where he oversees internal service departments, public safety reform, economic recovery, and special projects. Prior to that, he served as city manager in Fairfield, California for five years.
“David has a keen understanding of the central issues our like-minded cities face and has demonstrated that he has the experience and spirit of can-do inclusion we need to lead Santa Monica at this critical time,” said Mayor Sue Himmelrich. “We are thrilled to have found a candidate so aligned with our community’s values and impatiently await his arrival so we may begin our collective work.”
In Berkeley, White championed reimagining public safety, including a new model of civilian oversight of Berkeley’s Police Department, said city officials in a statement. “With an extensive background in finance both as an investment banker and as Fairfield’s finance director, White is well-suited to see Santa Monica through our economic recovery.”
As the city manager of Fairfield, White advanced a citywide strategy to address homelessness, oversaw a large capital project portfolio, and prioritized fiscal health and community engagement, said Santa Monica officials.
"I am excited and humbled to serve the City of Santa Monica as its City Manager,” said White. “Santa Monica is a wonderful community and I am eager to engage and work closely with the City Council, staff, residents, and businesses implementing City Council's top priorities -- achieving a clean and safe Santa Monica, addressing homelessness and ensuring an equitable and inclusive economic recovery."
A Los Angeles native, White grew up in Studio City and graduated from UCLA with a bachelor’s degree in psychology and anthropology. He holds a master’s degree in city planning from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. White will be relocating to Santa Monica with his wife and daughter and looks forward to “coming home” to Southern California.
As City Manager, White will oversee a total City budget of $705.5 million and a workforce of 1,923.