City Manager

Organization: City of Portage, Michigan
Salary: The position offers a competitive salary and benefits
Close Date: July 29, 2019

Job Description:

Portage, Michigan has shown itself to be the municipal equal to a renewable resource. The city offers its citizens a dynamic living environment, energized and sustained by quality of life characteristics that are unmatched in the region, punctuated with great retail, and enriched by a unique pledge to share the natural environment with its citizens.

More than 49,000 people call Portage home. Residents enjoy a low municipal tax rate that remains in the lower 25% of similar-sized Michigan cities. The city offers diverse and affordable housing opportunities with steadily increasing property values. Portage has more than 55 miles of extensive bikeways and trails, connecting citizens to retail and cultural resources and bringing neighbors and neighborhoods together. World-class healthcare is delivered to Portage. More than 2,000 acres of park and recreational and open space are ready to be explored in Portage. Portage Public Schools educates approximately 8,700 students at eight elementary, three middle and three high schools, and an early childhood program. PPS offers several prestigious learning programs.

The City of Portage is strategically located halfway between Detroit and Chicago and at the crossroads of two major highways – I-94 and US 131. Its location offers convenient access to the Kalamazoo/Battle Creek International Airport and an Amtrak train station, with Metro Transit providing public transportation services. Portage serves as the economic engine of Kalamazoo County and is home to two global companies and major employers, Stryker and Pfizer.

The City of Portage FY 2019-2020 budget totals approximately $84.9 million and includes the third consecutive annual millage reduction. The city has reduced its debt from $105.2 million in 2008 to $55.5 million in 2019, down 47% over 11 years and Standard & Poor’s reaffirmed the city’s credit rating of AA+ in May 2019. With a Total Taxable Assessed Value of $2.193 billion, Portage is the municipality with the largest tax base in Kalamazoo County.

The Portage City Council consists of a Mayor and six Councilmembers (non-partisan). Councilmembers are elected at-large to four-year terms, staggered every two years. The Mayor is elected every two years and is the presiding officer of the Council. The City Manager is appointed by and serves at the pleasure of the City Council. She or he advises the Council and makes recommendations on matters related to the operation of the city including the responsibility for overseeing all departments and staff. The City Manager appoints all department heads. Portage provides a full array of municipal services from ten departments: City Assessor, City Clerk, Community Development, Finance & Purchasing, Human Resources, Parks, Recreation & Senior Citizen Services, Public Safety (Police & Fire), Public Works, Technology Services and Transportation & Utilities. The city employs nearly 200 full-time employees who have an average of more than ten years of service, along with more than 53 part-time and seasonal employees. Portage employees are committed to providing exceptional customer service and attend annual customer service training and a regional diversity / inclusion presentation. Year after year, the City of Portage is recognized for excellence in areas such as public safety, innovative use of technology, financial planning and budgeting, public works projects, parks and recreation programs, public communications and other areas of public service.

Minimum requirements are a Bachelor’s Degree (Master’s Degree preferred) in business or public administration, combined with at least five (5) years of experience as a local government manager or full-range assistant in a community comparable to Portage. Critical skills include finance, budget, economic development, organizational analysis, written and verbal communications, visioning and strength of both character and conviction. The successful candidate must be a superior manager and leader.

The next City Manager of Portage will be an energetic, bold and dynamic leader. The city is proud of its position as the economic engine for the region. The City Manager will play a key role assisting the City Council in developing policy and implementing plans to continue the economic growth of the region. The successful candidate will have a track record of community involvement with the expressed desire and intent to manage in a community with the characteristics of Portage and to do so into the foreseeable future. For more information about the City of Portage, visit

The compensation for the City Manager position will be highly competitive. The starting compensation is dependent upon the selected individual’s qualifications and matched with the desired attributes being sought by the city. The city will pay reasonable and customary moving expenses for the next City Manager.

To Apply
In order to be considered for this position, please send your resume and cover letter with current salary to The recruitment period will remain open until the position is filled. For best results apply by July 29, 2019.

For additional information about this job, please contact:

Mr. Robert Slavin, President or
David Krings, Managing Consultant
Slavin Management Consultants
3040 Holcomb Bride Road, Suite A-1
Norcross, GA 30071-1357
Bob Slavin (770) 449-4656 | Dave Krings (513) 200-4220 |


Download a comprehensive profile information document (PDF)

© Copyright Slavin Management Consultants. All rights reserved.

Close This Listing Window