Community Development Director
Torrance California, the eighth largest city in Los Angeles County, is situated in a region of southern California known as the South Bay. This City of nearly 150,000 residents, with a peak day-time population that grows to 250,000 or more, spans an area of almost 22 square miles including 1 mile of beach.
Torrance features world-class medical and research facilities, vibrant shopping, four-star dining, as well as an intricate mix of burgeoning industrial and commercial facilities. Torrance is one of the few cities in the South Bay to feature its own municipal airport and support facilities. It is also considered to be a "headquarters" city, with major corporations such as Sunrider International, Alpinestars USA, Health-Ade Kombucha, Pelican Products, L3 Technologies, RapiScan Systems, American Honda Motor Company, and Robinson Helicopter Company all calling Torrance home.
The Community Development Department oversees and initiates plans for: economic growth; commercial, industrial, and residential development and re-development; zoning; code enforcement; permitting; and building inspections. The Department has 69.5 employees over 10 different divisions: Administration, Development Services, Environmental & Noise Abatement, Downtown, Housing, GIS, Plan Check, Building Inspection, Public Works Records & Inspections, and Permit Center.
A tremendous opportunity exists for an experienced, dedicated planning professional to positively influence Torrance's future. Major responsibilities of the Community Development Director include redevelopment, comprehensive planning, zoning, housing programs, project planning, permitting, environmental stewardship, building and code enforcement.
The Community Development Director is a department head, executive position charged with administrative, managerial, supervisory, and professional duties in directing the City's planning and engineering development.
The Ideal Candidate
As a vibrant community committed to redevelopment and economic growth, Torrance needs a strategic and self-motivated leader committed to building trust, creating a shared vision and strategy, executing their vision and strategy all the way through completion, and developing the leadership potential in others by improving performance through consistent feedback and coaching. The City also seeks to hire someone who understands and is responsive to the business community's needs. The successful candidate will have a proven track record of building and maintaining effective working relationships with coworkers (peers and subordinates), elected officials, citizens, and contractors. As a member of the Executive Management Team, the Community Development Director will collaborate with team members to achieve the City's long-term goals.
The City will evaluate the position's success based on building a department poised to support existing development and redevelopment opportunities, large and small. The candidate will also demonstrate the leadership to independently implement programs, projects, and policies in a manner that maximizes results.
Key Community Development Director Responsibilities include:
- Managing all Community Development Department services and activities, which include: planning, directing, coordinating, and evaluating the City's long-term redevelopment, development, and environmental needs.
- Leadership in the area of land use, large-scale transportation planning, and development financing to further the City's long-term vision.
- Overseeing, managing, and promoting sustainable environmental programs and practices.
- Evaluating efficiency and effectiveness of service delivery; identifying improvement opportunities and implementing changes; establishing fiscally-prudent staffing levels.
- Developing and recommending plans and policies for Tax Increment Financing (TIF), Special Service Districts, and use of Community Development Block Grant Funds.
Major Initiatives & Opportunities
The City Council has placed a high emphasis on redevelopment, and has established values that are progressive, innovative, proactive, and inclusive. Initiatives that require immediate focus include:
- Possible implementation of cannabis regulation;
- Issues surrounding personal shared mobility devices (shared electric scooters and bicycles);
- Possible adoption of a commercial / multi-family residential building seismic retrofit program;
- Issues surrounding short-term vacation rentals;
- Visioning for Downtown Torrance; and
- Management of the City's Strategic Plan update process (2018 - 2028).
Education and Experience
Any combination of education and experience that provides the required knowledge and skills is qualifying. A typical way of obtaining the necessary knowledge and abilities would be:
Graduation from a college or university with a Bachelor's degree in City or regional planning, public administration, engineering or a related field; and six years of increasingly responsible professional planning experience, at least three years of a supervisory experience, one year of which included management responsibility for a major function in Community Development (e.g., general plan development, redevelopment, zoning, transportation planning, engineering etc.).
Master's degree in business or public administration preferred.
HOW TO APPLY & EXAM PROCESS
Interested candidates are required to complete an online application with responses to the supplemental questions and a resume that clearly demonstrates that qualifications have been met. Resumes must include start and end dates reported by month and year for each position held.
Responses to the supplemental questionnaire should be submitted on MS Word or PDF document. The responses to the supplemental questions and the resume must be attached to the online application and submitted simultaneously by the close of the filing period.
1. Provide a brief summary of your experience/role (employed, supervised, managed, work with another department, etc.) in these areas:
a. Economic Development and/or Urban Renewal
b. Collaboration with the Business Community
c. Long Range and Strategic Planning
d. Community Outreach and Community-Based Planning
e. Zoning and Subdivision Codes and Permits
f. Building Codes and Permits?
2. Describe a recent accomplishment in a municipal or private setting that resulted in economic growth and/or improvements to the community. Include a description of your role, management skills you applied, and results achieved.
3. What successful strategies have you used to build and maintain effective working relationships with coworkers (peers and subordinates), elected officials, citizens, and contractors?
4. Describe your experience, successes, and challenges managing personnel.
5. Customer service is extremely important when working with the community. What ideas could you implement in the Department for streamlining the permitting and planning process?
The application filing period begins Thursday, February 28, 2019 to and closes Thursday, March 21, 2019. Only those candidates who best meet the Department's and City's requirements will be invited to participate in the examination process.
The examination will consist of a qualifying application review and an oral interview (weighted 100%). Interviews are tentatively scheduled for Tuesday, April 2, 2019.
Visit www.TorranceCA.Gov to find out more information about our Community.
Applicants with disabilities who require special testing arrangements must contact Human Resources. If you have a disability for which you require an accommodation, please contact us at (310) 618-2915 no later than five (5) business days before the test date.
As a condition of employment, candidates must pass a background check and a pre-employment medical examination.
The provisions of this announcement do not constitute an expressed or implied contract, and any provisions contained in this announcement may be modified or revoked without notice.