Mayor Faulconer Appoints Longtime Civic Leader as Chief Operating Officer


San Diego – Mayor Kevin L. Faulconer today announced the appointment of City Hall veteran and civic leader Kris Michell as Chief Operating Officer. Michell will succeed Scott Chadwick, who has overseen City of San Diego operations since 2013 and recently accepted a position as COO for the City of Carlsbad. Michell, who currently serves as Deputy COO for Special Projects, will be only the second female COO in City of San Diego history.

“Working with Scott when I was a Councilmember and now as Mayor, I have seen how his thoughtful, calm and strategic leadership moved our city forward. He has been an invaluable partner as I worked to return trust and stability to City Hall. An organization is only as good as its people, and Scott is without a doubt one of the finest City employees I’ve had the pleasure of working with,” Mayor Faulconer said.

“Kris has a results-driven approach that time and again has gotten big things done for San Diego. Her wealth of experience both inside and outside City Hall has earned her the respect of leaders on both sides of the aisle,” Mayor Faulconer said. “Since taking office I’ve made it a priority to make the City more efficient and effective, and Kris will work with our dedicated employees to ensure the public receives excellent service. We are embracing new ideas and approaches to deliver results for our neighborhoods, and Kris is the right person for the job.”

Prior to returning to the City in 2017 to manage major projects and initiatives, Michell held various leadership roles in the public and private sectors. She served as Chief of Staff for Mayors Susan Golding and Jerry Sanders, overseeing the successful implementation of their agendas.

As Vice President of Governmental Relations for the San Diego Padres, she coordinated the successful campaign that led to the development of Petco Park. Michell also held the role of President and CEO of the Downtown San Diego Partnership, where she oversaw day-to-day operations of the nonprofit organization and was responsible for the Clean & Safe program that offered services to enhance quality of life for 11,000 property owners in San Diego’s urban core. A native San Diegan, Michell earned a B.A. in Political Science from San Diego State University.

“My entire career has been in service of San Diego and it’s a true honor to take on this new role. Mayor Faulconer has a bold agenda for 2018 and beyond and I look forward to working with all of our City employees to implement his vision and goals,” Michell said. “Since returning to City Hall last year, I have been so impressed by Scott and the talented people helping to lead our city. I will be working closely with our executive team, the Mayor, and his office to continue his aggressive plans for street and infrastructure repair, tackle our homelessness and housing crises, grow our police department and improve quality of life in all our neighborhoods.”

Chadwick served in the United States Army and was a Business Representative for AFSCME, Local 127 prior to joining the City in 2004. He rose quickly through the ranks, earning promotions to Labor Relations Director and Human Resources Director before being appointed COO in 2013.

During Chadwick’s tenure under Mayor Faulconer, the City balanced four fiscally-responsible budgets, successfully renegotiated contracts with its labor unions, underwent a transformation of its capital program that resulted in a historic increase in infrastructure improvements, adopted a new strategic plan, and enacted new initiatives to become more data driven. He also oversaw the creation and implementation of an operations plan to enhance government transparency, increase efficiencies, improve overall communication and collaboration, and create greater accountability to the public.

“I’ve worked to instill a culture where character matters, we lead by example, and we care about our employees,” Chadwick said. “While I would love to spend the rest of my career at the City of San Diego, I have been presented with a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. We have achieved the operational goals I set out four years ago, and it could not have happened without the leadership of Mayor Faulconer, the support of our management team and the efforts of our talented employees. I love San Diego, and my experience working with such committed and hardworking people is something I’ll always carry with me.”

Michell’s appointment will be effective following confirmation by the City Council. The City of San Diego has more than 11,000 employees and a Fiscal Year 2018 budget of $3.3 billion.


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