The search for the next county chief executive continues

ONLINE—Sevet Johnson, Acting Chief Executive Officer of Ventura County, tours the Sheriff’s Department’s new Mobile Incident Command Post vehicle in March. Johnson is considered to be in the running for the county’s permanent CEO position. A decision is expected soon. MICHAEL COONS Acorn Journals

The Ventura County Board of Supervisors could decide on the county’s next chief executive as early as next week.

Council is due to discuss the matter behind closed doors at its meeting on Tuesday, August 2, which begins at 8:30 a.m.

Sevet Johnson, chief deputy director of the county health agency, has served in the acting role since March, shortly after the resignation of former county CEO Mike Powers.

Earlier this year, residents had the opportunity to complete an online survey to rank the skills and personality traits they felt were most important in the next CEO, but the selection will be made by supervisors alone, said said county spokesperson Jackie Nuñez.

“The CEO hire will be treated the same as county attorney and public defender hires have been in recent years,” Nuñez said. “Interviews and discussion will take place behind closed doors. . . with an announcement outside the closed session once the final decision has been made.

The same company that conducted the search to fill the county attorney position is conducting the search for the CEO. In late March, supervisors voted 5-0 to hire Sacramento-based CPS HR Consulting at a cost of no more than $75,000, though county staff initially suggested a $40,000 limit.

“We don’t want to spend too much, but we also don’t want to spend less,” board chair Carmen Ramirez said at the time.

Once the five-member oversight board can reach a closed-door agreement on the next CEO, a public meeting will be scheduled to conduct the formal vote, Nuñez said.

Powers, who served as county CEO for more than a decade, resigned in March after being placed on paid leave amid an investigation into sexual harassment and workplace discrimination. He and the county now face a trial from his accuser.

Whoever is appointed to the position will be responsible for overseeing a $2.4 billion budget, 10,000 employees and 27 agencies and departments, including the sheriff and fire department.

Rental of a health agency

In other county employee news this month, the county named Scott Gilman to lead its behavioral health department, one of Johnson’s former roles.

Gilman will lead the county’s continuum of coordinated mental health and addictions services and oversee a staff of more than 800 employees and a departmental budget of $254 million.

Gilman most recently served as Director of Behavioral Health and Recovery Services for San Mateo County, where he strategized for a countywide mental health first aid training initiative to advocate and to collectively address mental health wellness, anti-stigma, early intervention and suicide awareness. with local towns.

“Throughout Mr. Gilman’s 30-year career, he has been innovative when charged with developing and implementing new initiatives,” said Barry Zimmerman, director of the Agency for county health care. “It will serve our agency and our community well as we navigate these new statewide efforts to improve access and quality of care.”

Brandon D. James