Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Greg Burris Announced as New City Manager

August 12, 2008

News Release

For Immediate Release

Greg Burris Announced as New City Manager

photo: greg burris formal portrait

The Springfield City Council is pleased to announce the selection of Greg Burris as Springfield’s 12th City Manager.

Burris, currently vice president of Administrative & Information Services at Missouri State University, will join the City effective Sept. 15, 2008.

The Council approved Burris’ appointment during a closed meeting on Tuesday, Aug. 12. Burris was one of the three finalists who participated in an extensive interview process last week with Council. He replaces Bob Cumley, who retired in May with 35 years of service to the City.

For the final vote, Councilman Doug Burlison made the motion to hire Burris and Councilman John Wylie seconded the motion. The vote was 8-1 in favor, with Councilwoman Cindy Rushefsky voting no.

“After more than 25 hours of interviews and deliberations, the Council believes Greg has the outstanding leadership qualities and best fulfills the characteristics that Council was seeking in a new City Manager,” Mayor Tom Carlson said.

His base salary will be $195,000 a year, which is in the midrange of the scale recommended by the compensation subcommittee of the City Manager Search Committee, plus benefits.

Mayor Pro Tem Gary Deaver expressed his appreciation on behalf of City Council to the Search Committee for their efforts in this process, including the compensation recommendations and the profile of characteristics sought in a new City Manager.

“We are extremely grateful to the committee members who represented a broad cross-section of community stakeholders and worked diligently to help Council reach the stage where we interviewed the three finalists,” said Deaver, who co-chaired the Search Committee. “We have the utmost respect for all three of the finalist candidates and offer our best wishes for success to Kent Myers and Larry Stevens.

“The Search Committee and the Search Firm used all of the public input to develop a profile focused on four areas: leadership, fiscal responsibility, community involvement and redevelopment/development skills,” Deaver added. “We are confident that Greg meets or exceeds all of these characteristics and has an enormous amount of energy and enthusiasm to quickly translate his skills into public administration.”

Ann Marie Baker, who co-chaired the Search Committee with Deaver, said she has looked forward to the day when the new City Manager would be announced.

“We anticipated bringing someone on board who could lead our City to future success,” said Baker, President of UMB Bank. “Little did we know that the months of activity would identify the top candidate as one of our fellow citizens, Greg Burris.

“Greg's considerable strengths include an engaged style of leadership, a commitment to strategic planning, and an energy level second to none,” she said. “I look forward to the days ahead as Greg steps into his new responsibilities and works with all stakeholders to bring our collective vision to reality. I have no doubt he has what it takes to tackle our opportunities and leverage our considerable strengths to the greater
success of our City.”

Burris, 46, accepted his first position at Missouri State upon graduation in 1983 with a degree in computer information systems. He received a number of promotions through the years and currently manages a division of about 350 employees. His current areas of responsibility include: Human Resources; Safety and Transportation; Facilities Management, including oversight of the JQH Arena construction; Campus Master Planning; Environmental Management; and Computer and Communications Services.

He has a bachelor’s degree in computer information systems and a master’s degree in business administration from Missouri State University.

“I’m extremely honored to be selected as City Manager and look forward to helping lead Springfield into the future. My experiences at Missouri State University have been incredibly positive and rewarding, and have prepared me to move into this role at the city,” Burris said. “My responsibilities at the University have paralleled many aspects of the City Manager’s duties, so I’m comfortable making this transition. With an extremely qualified and professional city staff, I have confidence we will be a successful team.”

His community service activities include serving on the boards of the Court Appointed Special Advocates, the Downtown Springfield Community Improvement District, Leadership Springfield and the Jordan Valley Advisory Committee. He also has volunteered to lead strategic planning and team-building workshops for non-profit boards and government entities including: Greene County, Urban Districts Alliance, Junior League of Springfield, the Doula Foundation and a number of others, including Kingsway United Methodist Church, where Burris attends and plays in its contemporary praise band.

Burris and his wife, Betsy, live in Springfield with their daughter, Tori, who attends the Central High School Middle Years Scholars Program.

For more information, contact: Mayor Tom Carlson, 864-7772; Mayor Pro Tem Gary Deaver, 866-6463; or Greg Burris, 836-5233.

Department of Public Information

840 Boonville Ave., P.O. Box 8368, Springfield, MO 65801-8368
Phone: (417) 864-1010 • FAX: (417) 864-1114 •

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