To Whom It May Concern,
I am honored to provide the highest possible reference for Nancy Kerry, a candidate for your management team. Nancy is a brilliant public servant, recognized by here peers for her financial acumen, strategic thinking and compassionate management style. I am particularly pleased to offer this reference because I was a member of the South Lake Tahoe City Council that promoted her to the position of city manager, in 2011, after six years of distinguished service in areas of economic and community development, employee relations and negotiations. In all, she served South Lake Tahoe for over 10 years.
Nancy took the helm at the height of the recession, when the city was reeling from drastic lay-offs of nearly 25% of city staff, service reductions to core functions, a stagnant economy. Critical “big” policy issues including the end of redevelopment, soaring health care costs, escalating PERS contributions, cannabis, and VHRs, threatened to swamp the council amid a rash of red ink. Stepping into the CM chair for the first time, Nancy proved herself quickly, finding the right solutions to propel South Lake Tahoe forward. She amassed an amazing list of accomplishments. Among them:
- Reducing the City’s long-term debts and eliminating $55 Million in unfunded liabilities in retiree employee health care obligations and PERS.
- Transforming the work culture within the City. Leading by example, Nancy implemented employee recognition strategies, restored “all-hands” meetings, established a succession plan, and re-established training opportunities for employees, including “City University” and built an enthusiastic senior leadership team.
- Brokering effective economic and community development strategies that broke environmental and regulatory gridlock resulting in the first major new infrastructure projects in South Lake Tahoe in nearly 20 years. These projects revitalized the tourist core, a midtown mixed-use district and delivered a new retail complex anchored by Whole Foods.
- Maintaining an open door policy, Nancy Kerry modeled a non-judgmental, deliberative style when developing community vision that brought fresh ideas to the table and built trust previously lacking in the community.
Nancy Kerry embodies the essential qualities every city seeks in its top official. She is ethical, a tough but fair-minded negotiator and a visionary genius who emphasizes community and team building. Moreover, she is one of the few California chief executives to implement a true “fix” to the PERS and health care millstones threatening to sink municipalities. Grab Nancy Kerry while she’s available. She will change your community for the better.
Yours in service,
Council Member of South Lake Tahoe, 2010-2014
Trustee of Lake Tahoe USD