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Lashbrook temporarily takes reins of the city

by: , Lashbrook

The Lake Oswego City Council officially announced the appointment of Stephan Lashbrook as interim city manager at its Tuesday meeting.

Lashbrook takes the place, temporarily, of Doug Schmitz.

Schmitz announced in July that he was leaving Lake Oswego to take the city manager post in Los Altos, Calif.

The council also announced the city has selected Avery Associates of Los Gatos, Calif., to lead the search for Schmitz's replacement.

At Tuesday's meeting, Mayor Judie Hammerstad said the city hopes to have Schmitz's replacement begin by early January. Lashbrook's contract will last no longer than six months, she said.

Lashbrook, who has been with the city for six years, was serving as community development director when he was picked by the council to be interim city manager.

'I'll keep the city running as smoothly as possible,' Lashbrook said Tuesday.

The four-month deadline puts pressure on the city and Avery Associates to move quickly in replacing Schmitz. Hammerstad said Avery Associates is the same executive search consulting firm that drew Schmitz away from Lake Oswego to Los Altos.

Initially, the city will work with Avery Associates to identify the type of person the city and citizens want for city manager.

The council and mayor haven't said whether they want a new city manager along the same lines as Schmitz - who was skilled at negotiating with retail developers, bringing to fruition developments such as Lake View Village.

At Tuesday's meeting the mayor and council heaped praise on the Schmitz era, which began in 1992.

The council passed a resolution that said Schmitz 'provided exemplary service to the city,' and designated the pergola at Millennium Plaza Park as 'The Douglas J. Schmitz Pergola.'

'Because the creation of Millennium Plaza Park has become a centerpiece of the revitalization of Lake Oswego that occurred through Douglas Schmitz's leadership, the council concludes that would be appropriate to honor Mr. Schmitz by naming a feature in that park after him,' the resolution said. 'The pergola at Millennium Plaza Park is an appropriate symbol of the enhanced enjoyment and appreciation of this city that citizens now have, thanks to the efforts of Douglas Schmitz.'