FAIRFIELD — City Manager Sean Quinn is stepping down from the municipal post he’s held since 2007.
He cited his health status when announcing he’ll retire this spring.
“These 29 years with Fairfield have been quite a ride,” Quinn, 57, said in a press release. “The greatest joy has been working with our employees. They are committed and dedicated, and that I will miss most of all.”
Mayor Harry Price said Quinn is one of the best city managers he’s had the opportunity to work with.
“I hate to see him go,” the mayor said. “He follows a pattern of really strong city managers.”
Price praised Quinn’s skills in economic development, his tact in city contract negotiations and success as the top executive at City Hall.
Councilman John Mraz said he was present when Quinn was hired as city manager.
“He’s never disappointed me,” Mraz said. “It’s going to be a real loss to the city.”
Fairfield has faced the same problems as other California cities during the long economic slowdown, the councilman said.
“The difference is that we have a good city manager who found the way through it,” Mraz said.
Police Chief Walt Tibbet said, “I don’t know if you have enough room for all the great things I’d say about Sean Quinn and what he’s done for this city.”
“I don’t know if everybody really understands the depth of what Sean’s meant to the city,” the chief said.
Fire Chief Tony Velasquez, who has worked for Fairfield for 22 years, praised Quinn.
“He’s always been the ultimate professional,” Velasquez said. “Always somebody really good to work with.”
“His passion and what he cares for is this community and the people who work here,” the fire chief said.
Noting the tough times cities in California, including Fairfield, have faced financially, Velasquez said, “It’s easy when things are good to be a good leader.” When you have to overcome challenges, Velasquez said, “you see what someone is about.”
Before becoming city manager, a post that pays $198,000, Quinn was director of community development for Fairfield. Prior to his city work, he owned his own company that consulted on real estate, economic development and redevelopment, the city website notes. He is a University of California, Santa Barbara, graduate with a degree in business economics and did graduate work in finance at California State University, Chico.
Mayor Price said the City Council is expected to take up the issue of selecting a new city manager during its annual retreat at the end of this month. The meeting will take place in Fairfield.
Councilman Mraz said he supports selecting David White, assistant city manager for Fairfield, to succeed Quinn.
Reach Ryan McCarthy at 427-6935 or [email protected]