Redwood City To Name Melissa Stevenson Diaz As City Manager

City Council to consider appointment of twenty-four year veteran in local government

REDWOOD CITY, CALIF. — The City of Redwood City announced today that the City Council will be voting to appoint Melissa Stevenson Diaz as City Manager to lead the organization following a formal recruitment process. The appointment and consideration of an employment contract are scheduled for City Council consideration at their next meeting on August 24, 2015.

“Redwood City demands a strong leader to support an engaged and progressive community,” said Jeff Gee, mayor of Redwood City. “Melissa Stevenson Diaz is the right person to lead the long-term success of the organization. Melissa is a seasoned veteran with over twenty-four years of experience working with diverse communities within Northern California. Her experience will be of tremendous value to the City of Redwood City as we look to the future and continue to build on our successes.”

Diaz has held various executive and leadership roles over her twenty-four year professional career in local government. Diaz is coming to Redwood City from the City of Mountain View, where she has held both Assistant City Manager and Interim City Manager roles. Prior to working in Mountain View, Diaz held various leadership roles in Fremont and Morgan Hill and was responsible for functions such as human resources, finance and budget, policy analysis, redevelopment and economic development, information technology management, community engagement and communications.

Diaz is a member of the International City/County Management Association, the California Public Employers Labor Relations Association, the Urban Land Institute, and the Municipal Management Association of Northern California. She holds a Masters of Public Administration from San Jose State University and a Bachelor of Arts in History from Mills College, where she is also a Mills College Board Trustee. Diaz is married and has two children.

“Redwood City has thoughtfully crafted a highly desirable community for residents and businesses alike,” said Melissa Stevenson Diaz. “I have long admired the City’s commitment to community engagement, inclusion, collaboration and innovation. It would be an honor to work with the City Council, staff, and community to further Redwood City’s success and positive momentum.”

City Manager Dr. Robert Bell (Bob) announced his retirement from the City of Redwood City at the end of February and a formal recruitment process was launched in April to search for his replacement. Dr. Bell retired in June and the City Council appointed Aaron Aknin as interim city manager. Aknin will continue as interim until October, at which time Aknin will return as Assistant City Manager and continue to retain the position of Community Development Director.

“I want to recognize Aaron Aknin and thank him for his leadership and service to our community,” said Gee. “Aaron is widely respected within the community and through the Redwood City organization. We are grateful for his ability to ensure a seamless transition following the retirement of Dr. Bell and the conclusion of the formal recruitment process.”

Following her appointment, Diaz will start as City Manager on October 12, 2015.

About Redwood City
The City of Redwood City is a San Francisco Bay Area community located in the heart of Silicon Valley, the technology-rich region extending from the San Francisco shoreline to the foothills of the Santa Cruz Mountains. Redwood City is the third largest city within the County of San Mateo, with over 84,000 residents. The city enjoys an average of 255 sunny days a year, which it boasts via the city slogan: “Climate Best by Government Test”. Incorporated in 1867, Redwood City is home to the San Mateo County History Museum (located in the county’s old courthouse) and the only active deep water port within the south bay of San Francisco. The city’s vibrant downtown, quickly becoming known as the entertainment hub of the San Francisco Peninsula, offers residents, visitors, and businesses a unique retail, entertainment, and restaurant experience. For more information, visit the City of Redwood City’s website at or follow @RedwoodCity on Twitter. To learn more about Redwood City’s downtown and to plan a visit, go to

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