More than two dozen apply to be the next city manager

About 25 people have applied to be Glendale’s next city manager, including at least one familiar face: George Chapjian, who left his post as community services and parks director in December for a similar job in Long Beach.

Chapjian confirmed this week that he had thrown his hat in the ring, but Burbank City Manager Michael Flad quashed rumors that he too was interested in the position.

Citing the preliminary stage of the application process, Chapjian declined to discuss his decision.

For his part, Flad said he is happy with his job and doesn’t plan to leave any time soon.

Glendale has hired Beverly Hills-based Norm Roberts Consulting Group to do an executive search to replace outgoing City Manager Jim Starbird, who plans to retire in December after 14 years as the city's chief executive.

Norm Roberts, founder of Norm Roberts Consulting Group, said he could not provide the full list of applicants as the process is still ongoing and the council had yet to review the pool. He said he plans to complete background screenings and present his findings to the council next month.

“This was an expedited search,” he said.

Most of the applicants, he added, are from Southern California.

The job ad, which was posted at Western City Magazine, asked for candidates who had run full-service cities and had at least five years of high-level administrative leadership. It did not list a salary range, but described benefits, such as a car allowance, health insurance and retirement benefits. Starbird makes about $240,000 a year excluding benefits, according to city records.

Chapjian was recently named in two lawsuits filed in U.S. District Court in July by former park rangers Russell Hauck and Eric Grossman, who claim they were laid off after they reported alleged misuse of a city vehicle by Dave Ahern, the former capital projects administrator for the parks department, to superiors, including Chapjian.

Glendale Human Resources Director Matt Doyle has said any jobs lost were due to budget cuts.

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