Modesto has hired Marin County’s top information technology manager to fill the same role here.
Charlie Haase starts Jan. 9 as chief information officer, at a salary of $159,387. The city conducted a nationwide search that attracted 59 candidates, according to a Modesto news release.
“Although we had a very competitive list of highly qualified candidates, Mr. Haase rose to the top,” interim City Manager Joe Lopez said in the release.
Haase has extensive public sector experience. Marin County hired him in November 2012, and before that, he was Shasta County’s chief technology officer for nearly 14 years. He also has information technology experience in the private sector.
“I certainly wish him all the best,” Marin County Administrator Matthew Hymel said in remarks relayed by a county spokesman. “He helped move the county forward on some much needed IT improvements.”
Haase said he was impressed with the Modesto officials he has met and the city’s commitment to innovation and serving its residents.
He is taking about a $44,000 pay cut to come here, but the cost of living is substantially less. And there also are personal reasons for the change. Haase said he no longer has to commute 45 to 60 minutes to and from work and he will be living in an agricultural community. Haase grew up in a farming town in Nebraska. “It’s a different way of life,” he said.
But he also is taking over a department that has had its issues.
John Dickey, the former chief information officer, was removed from running the department in May after a city investigation found he had treated two female staff members with disrespect, which Dickey denied.
The investigation also suggested there were morale and management problems in the department. Dickey has said he stepped into a difficult role, and the department had had several chief information officers in the past decade.