City Manager - City of Madison Heights - Michigan


The Mayor and City Council seek to recruit a new City Manager for the City of Madison Heights. This individual must have the skills and experience to guide Madison Heights with an appropriate  combination of empowering leadership, community orientation and operational skills.

The City of Madison Heights, known as the “City of Progress,” is conveniently located in the center of Southeast Michigan, within prosperous Oakland County, and near to Detroit, a city experiencing significant revitalization.  It is a community-oriented, progressive city that provides exceptional city services and has a socially conscious Council that is innovative and creative, and responsive to new ideas that can benefit its residents.

The population of Madison Heights is approximately 30,000 individuals and covers around seven square miles with dense residential developments mixed with a variety of retail, light industrial and commercial businesses including multiple headquarter locations.  The city is an “inner-ring suburb”, and there is a desire to increase the number of entertainment and tech related businesses, as the manufacturing/light industrial properties decline.

Madison Heights provides its residents with a range of affordable housing options, excellent school districts, a wide range of community amenities, in close proximity to urban and job centers.  The community is known for strong civic and community engagement. The City is experiencing an influx of young professionals and families, and immigrants, and needs to provide excellent quality of life amenities to be able to retain these key populations, such as top notch parks, restaurants & cultural opportunities.

This position is the chief administrative officer of the city.  Department leadership is highly competent and passionate about delivering excellent services to City residents.  

A link to the budget and additional details of specific job duties outlined in the City Charter can be found at:

The City Manager is responsible for the implementation of the policies and direction set by the City Council. The powers and duties granted to the City Manager include:

  • Directing and supervising all City Departments;
  • Enforcing municipal ordinances, charter provisions, and other laws and regulations;
  • Overseeing all personnel functions of the City;
  • Preparing annual operating budget;
  • Providing administrative support at all Council Meetings;
  • Reporting to Council on a continuing as well as ad hoc basis on the City's finances, operations, and future needs; and,
  • Supervising the purchasing activity of the City.

The City Manager also performs other administrative duties not limited in the Charter such as:

  • Assuring positive relationships with the public;
  • Coordinating public information;
  • Investigating and adopting new technologies; and,
  • Working with outside governmental and non-governmental agencies.
  • Relevant Experience

We are seeking a facilitator, team builder and problem solver with the appropriate experiences and track record of success.  We seek a collaborator and consensus builder that supports the City Council, City Staff and residents, and will help implement new initiatives and continue the tradition of delivering excellent City services.  

This role has many facets, and the successful candidate will be an excellent people developer, project manager, strategic thinker, and community engager.  Candidates should demonstrate a sense of passion for public service and empathy for a wide range of perspectives and needs.

The City Manager will have a key role in helping to address key issues that are facing the City, including:

  • Supporting quality of life amenities including the public library and recreation resources
  • Community and economic development
  • Public safety
  • Low revenue growth
  • Infrastructure needs
  • Population shift from older to younger residents
  • Safety net services for low income residents
  • Support for immigrants

Experience with the following areas of subject matter is helpful:

  • Economic development
  • Public safety  
  • Collective bargaining  
  • Understanding of municipal and community development national trends  
  • Quality of life public-private partnerships and/or grant writing
  • Municipal infrastructure, roads, traffic
  • Municipal laws, regulations, rules


A Bachelor’s degree in business, public administration, government, economics, social science, planning, or a related field is required. A Master’s degree or other advanced graduate-level credentials are strongly preferred.

Key Competencies

The next City Manager must be a leader who embodies the spirit of public service and displays deep compassion for the community.  This individual must foster a culture of open communication while collaborating with council, neighborhood communities, local organizations, labor associations, businesses, and residents from across the City to achieve excellence.

They must have demonstrated expertise of leading and supporting initiatives in a highly complex environment.  

In terms of the performance and competencies required for the position, we would highlight the following:

Creativity and passion regarding community development.  Would identify partnership and grant opportunities to attract new businesses, such as breweries, to the City.  Would seek out and build relationships with regional and state organizations to take advantage of economic development programs and opportunities.

Successful track record of managing an entity similar to Madison Heights in terms of size, complexity, and culture, with clear strategic results; has strong financial skills; executes policies efficiently and effectively by championing best-in-class operational practices and a culture of operational excellence.

The ability to attract and recruit top talent, motivate the team, delegate effectively, celebrate diversity within the team, manage performance, and be widely viewed as a strong leader who engages and supports others.

A leader who is viewed by others as having a high degree of integrity and forethought in their approach to making decisions; the ability to act in a transparent and consistent manner while always taking into account what is best for Madison Heights; demonstrates strong negotiation skills.

The ability to advise the Mayor and City Council regarding both positive and negative policy implications by having the aptitude to seek, analyze, and present data from a variety of sources to support multiple viewpoints and to align residents with the City’s overall strategy.  City Council is forward thinking, and will embrace creative ideas and solutions from the next City Manager.

Naturally connects with and, builds strong relationships with others; demonstrates strong emotional intelligence and an ability to communicate clearly and persuasively.  Appreciates the wide range of experiences and perspectives in the community. Seeks to engage broadly.

An ability to inspire trust internally and externally through compelling influence, powerful charisma, passion in their beliefs, and active drive; understands the importance of finding common ground.

Encourages others to share the spotlight and visibly celebrates and supports the success of the team.

To Apply

Interested applicants may send an email with a current resume and cover letter to Candidates seeking confidentiality under Michigan law should clearly state their intentions. Applications are requested by October 14, 2018.

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