January 6, 2005: Headlines: COS - Venezuela: City Government: Press-Enterprise: Venezuela RPCV Sam Racadio retiring as Highland city manager

Peace Corps Online: Directory: Venezuela: Peace Corps Venezuela : The Peace Corps in Venezuela: June 21, 2003 - San Bernadino Sun: Venezuela RPCV Sam Racadio is Highland City Manager : January 6, 2005: Headlines: COS - Venezuela: City Government: Press-Enterprise: Venezuela RPCV Sam Racadio retiring as Highland city manager

By Admin1 (admin) (adsl-70-240-139-65.dsl.okcyok.swbell.net - on Monday, January 09, 2006 - 4:56 pm: Edit Post

Venezuela RPCV Sam Racadio retiring as Highland city manager

Venezuela RPCV Sam Racadio retiring as Highland city manager

"(Racadio) is kind of like the father of the city's growth," Councilman and former Mayor John Timmer said. "I think he stayed because he wanted to see his child grow and mature, and he's done that."

Venezuela RPCV Sam Racadio retiring as Highland city manager

Highland city manager announces retirement // STEPPING DOWN IN JULY ; He took the reins shortly after the community incorporated in 1987.

Jan 6, 2006

Press-Enterprise Riverside CA


Sam Racadio, Highland's first and only permanent city manager, announced Thursday that he will retire in July.

He will leave after about 18 years in the position to spend more time with his family, said Racadio, 57.

Although the average tenure for a city manager is five years, "what kept me here is a love of the community," he said.

Hired shortly after Highland incorporated in 1987, Racadio ran the fledgling city of 2,800 residents out of a small, rented office. At the time, experts including the head of the Local Agency Formation Commission predicted that the city would fail, Racadio said.

Now, with a population of more than 50,000 and a number of major projects reaching fruition, city leaders past and present credit much of Highland's success to the way that Racadio implemented a "pay as you go" philosophy.

"He was magical with numbers," said Dennis Johnson, the city's first mayor. "He's (fiscally) ultraconservative, everyone knows that, but his personality is what has shined for the past 15 or 20 years."

Despite the challenges of the city's early years, frugality has paid off, Racadio said. The city has dedicated three new parks and is working toward bringing in two major shopping centers.

A long-awaited westside fire station - which became a pivotal issue in a 2004 recall election - is scheduled to be completed in June. Work on an athletic center and therapy pool east of the Jerry Lewis Community Center is under way, and construction of a 30,000-square-foot library and environmental learning center will begin this spring.

"(Racadio) is kind of like the father of the city's growth," Councilman and former Mayor John Timmer said. "I think he stayed because he wanted to see his child grow and mature, and he's done that."

Before coming to Highland, Racadio was Banning's city manager for three years. He also served as assistant city manager of Tulare in the San Joaquin Valley and worked on city staffs in Corona, Fontana and Riverside. From 1973 to 1974, he worked in a city in Venezuela as a Peace Corps volunteer.

Racadio said he will continue to live in Highland with his wife, Len, and will remain active in the community.

The City Council will likely discuss the search for a new city manager at Tuesday's meeting, Mayor Pro Tem Penny Lilburn said. Councilman Larry McCallon said he will urge Racadio to run for City Council in the next election.

With the city going strong, it is a good time to leave, Racadio said.

"The motto of true stewardship is to leave it better than when you found it," he said. "It's a great feeling to be able to leave this community better than when I found it."

When this story was posted in January 2006, this was on the front page of PCOL:

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Story Source: Press-Enterprise

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