René Bobadilla Selected as Santa Monica’s Next City Manager; Former City Manager John Jalili to Serve as Interim City Manager

June 9, 2021 6:30 AM

SANTA MONICA, Calif.  Tonight, the Santa Monica City Council announced that they have selected René Bobadilla to serve as the City of Santa Monica’s chief executive. Bobadilla has significant experience running city organizations having held the city manager position in Montebello since June 2019 as well as Pico Rivera (2014 - 2018), Huntington Park (2012 - 2014), and El Monte (2010 - 2012).  

“René is an experienced city manager whose more than decade of experience leading cities in eastern Los Angeles County will allow him to hit the ground running on our community priorities of a safe and clean Santa Monica, addressing homelessness, and an equitable and inclusive economic recovery,” said Mayor Sue Himmelrich. “René is an extremely affable and energetic leader who has a deep grasp of complex fiscal management and municipal operations. The Council very much looks forward to the community and the talented City team getting to know City Manager Bobadilla in the weeks and months to come.” 

In addition to his depth of experience as a tenured city manager, Bobadilla also served as the director of economic development and sustainability for the City of Commerce, background that will prove valuable as Santa Monica expedites communitywide recovery from the pandemic. Before becoming the city manager of El Monte, he served as that city’s public works director, including managing large capital projects. He spent ten years as a civil engineer for Los Angeles County and has worked as an engineer in the private sector.   

Bobadilla holds a Master of Public Administration from Villanova University and a Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering from California State Polytechnic University. A lifelong Los Angeles County resident, Bobadilla was born and raised in El Monte. 

As City Manager, Bobadilla will oversee a total City budget of $705.5 million and a workforce of 1,923. City Manager Bobadilla’s contract, including start date and salary, will be negotiated, and will return to Council for approval. 

City Council has appointed Santa Monica’s former City Manager John Jalili as Interim City Manager. Jalili will transition into the role soon and will officially hold the post upon Interim City Manager Lane Dilg’s departure on June 24. 

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