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It’s official: Brian Saeki hired as city manager

WHITTIER – Brian Saeki will become Whittier’s next city manager after the City Council unanimously voted to approve his employment contract Tuesday.

Saeki replaces Jeff Collier, who is retiring at the end of this month.

According to his contract, Saeki will be paid an annual salary of $245,000 plus benefits.

Council members took turns Tuesday expressing their excitement to bring Saeki to Whittier.

“We’re all really excited to have Brian on board,” said Councilmember Cathy Warner. “I’m really excited for members of the community to meet him and engage with him. He’s going to hit the ground running, and he has a residence in Whittier, and what else can you ask for.”

Councilman Henry Bouchot said that during the interview process, he asked Saeki to pick between LeBron James and Michael Jordan. Saeki picked LeBron.

“He really explained how LeBron, his skill is making others better. He’s a facilitator,” said Bouchot. “Brian is a facilitator for other people. He knows how to manage down with his subordinates but he also knows – importantly – how to manage up, which, with this council, is going to be a heck of a task.”

Collier’s last day with Whittier is Nov. 30 and Saeki begins his new position Dec. 9. The council voted in closed session to make assistant city manager Shannon DeLong interim city manager Dec. 1-8.

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