Merced City Manager Stephanie Dietz has informed the City Council of her plans to depart from her role, it was announced Wednesday morning, minutes before the Times press deadline.
Dietz will leave the City of Merced following nearly seven years of service in November 2023, a press release stated.
“My time serving this community has been the greatest honor of my professional career,” Dietz said. “I am extremely proud of the staff’s combined energy, talents, determination, and ability to execute the council’s policy direction. Our accomplishments are a tribute to the council and community’s vision, commitment, and dedication.”
I will continue to support the City Council as they develop a thoughtful succession plan for a productive transition. Our combined focus is to promote the opportunities in our community to attract a seasoned professional who will lead with compassion, integrity, and respect,” she concluded.
The city has retained Bob Murray & Associates to conduct a robust national search. The City Council will work with the firm to establish a recruitment timeframe.
“Stephanie continues to provide leadership founded on fiscal responsibility, customer service, and equity,” said Mayor Matthew Serratto. “She has shaped a responsive and accountable city government and continues to work tirelessly to exceed the council’s expectations for this critical position.”
Dietz began her service to Merced as the community’s 12th city manager in November 2020. During this time, she has navigated the city through volatile economies and responded to a global pandemic while keeping the city fiscally sound. Most notably, under her leadership, the city secured over $131 million in state and federal grant funding and developed the first dedicated financial reserve of $15 million to guard against service degradation during recession seasons.
As Chief Administrator, she has been instrumental in elevating the city’s annual strategic planning efforts by identifying goals & priorities to allow the city’s elected officials to be an effective policy-setting body. In addition, Dietz has centered her work on creating community and equal access to services and programs aimed at solving various challenges.
Dietz has led staff to successfully reimagine an approach to services and housing to facilitate an increase in construction and unit production while advocating for the continued improvement and maintenance of the city’s infrastructure.
She is the first female to fill this city leadership role. Before her appointment, Ms. Dietz served as Merced’s Assistant City Manager beginning in 2016. During this time, she implemented the Arts and Culture Advisory Commission and structured the city’s Legislative Platform to advocate for grant funding and resources. In addition, she created collaborative relationships with civic partners to identify and complete city beautification projects.
Dietz currently serves as Vice Chair for the Merced Irrigated-Urban GSA and is the local project lead for state rail investments of ACE, High-Speed Rail, and Amtrak. She holds a bachelor’s degree from California State University Fresno and a master’s degree from National University. Stephanie is a California State Association of Counties Senior Executive credential program graduate. She has served as a co-chair of the Northern San Joaquin Valley Regions Rise program, part of the state’s economic development initiative.