Fernando Santillan was named Selma’s City Manager on December 8th and has worked hard ever since.
Santillan is no stranger to Selma, having previously worked as deputy city manager and community development director for the city of Selma since February 2021.
The Enterprise-Recorder recently spoke to Santillan, who had spent the last six years prior to his time in Selma as community and economic director of the city of Avenal, about his vision for the community.
Q: What are your plans as City Manager?
ONE: One of my goals is to help Selma grow and improve the quality of life for all Selma residents. That includes more homes, more shops, and more amenities that make Selma the best place to live in County Fresno.
Q: Why was Selma a place you wanted to come and take on this role?
ONE: I started out as a community development leader in Selma and accepted the position because Selma has such great potential to become the most desirable place to live in Fresno County. When I was appointed City Manager, I was happy to accept it because I had already met so many great people, organizations and agencies in Selma and I knew that by working together and developing a solid vision for the city we can achieve great things for the community.
Q: Is there a big project that you would like to work on in your new role as City Manager?
ONE: We are working on so many exciting projects in the city that it is hard to choose just one, but in general our top priority is building our infrastructure that will help us develop enough homes and businesses to accommodate everyone who lives want and work in Selma. We are also very focused on public safety and make sure we do everything we can to keep Selma safe for all residents.
Q: Can you tell a little bit about yourself to those who may not know your background?
ONE: I have a BS in Business Administration, Finance from California State University, Northridge. I started in the Fresno City Government in the Economic Development Department because I wanted to help companies grow and create jobs in the Central Valley. I was also part of the Fresno County Economic Development Corporation, where I’ve helped attract companies to Fresno County from all over the world. From then on I developed an interest in town planning and eventually became the community development director for the city of Avenal, where I worked for six years before joining Selma.
Santillan said he was looking forward to the years to come and working with the residents of Selma.
âI am thrilled to have the opportunity to help Selma become a really great city, and I look forward to working with our residents, community organizations, business owners and entrepreneurs, the Selma City staff and our city council to make a difference achieve this goal, âhe said.
Santillan’s annual salary is $ 188,000 and will be effective December 8, 2021. The City Manager is appointed by the City Council and acts as the operational head of the city government.