Assistant City Manager of Pico Rivera, Katherine Fuentes, Chosen as Cathedral City’s New Assistant City Manager
Following a nationwide recruitment process that attracted more than 200 applicants, Katherine Fuentes, the current assistant city manager for the City of Pico Rivera, has been chosen to serve as Cathedral City’s new Assistant City Manager.
Until now, Cathedral City, the second most populous city in Coachella Valley, has not had an assistant city manager.
Fuentes currently serves as an assistant city manager for a similar size city within Los Angeles County where for more than six years she has specialized in long-term strategic planning and innovative transformation.
Pico Rivera is located approximately 11 miles southeast of downtown Los Angeles, on the eastern edge of the Los Angeles basin, and on the southern edge of the area known as the San Gabriel Valley. The ports of Long Beach and Los Angeles, as well as Los Angeles International Airport (LAX), are in close proximity. As of July 2019, the census estimated that the city has a population of 62,027.
Fuentes started her municipal government career, after previously serving many years in the private sector, in the city of Pico Rivera’s Finance Department before moving into the Administration Department. There she quickly advanced into roles of increasing responsibility culminating with the position of Assistant City Manager. Her leadership style refocused from managing projects to empowering, motivating and mentoring people. She believed then, and continues to believe now, that true leadership is about being successful through others. Throughout her career she has been celebrated for her innovative achievements and passion driven leadership.
City Manager Charlie McClendon said, “I am excited to have Katherine Fuentes join the Cathedral City Team. After careful consideration of all the candidates, Katherine rose to the top due to her innovative approaches to enhancing the quality of life in local communities.”
In 2017, Fuentes launched the Pico Rivera Innovative Municipal Energy (PRIME) program, the Ninth Community Choice Aggregation (CCA) program to form in the state of California. This enterprise generated $14 Million in new revenue for the City. In 2019, she acquired and converted 3,000 Southern California Edison (SCE) streetlights to LED, saving the city more than over $2.8 million over 20 years. Fuentes believes that we all must do our part to safeguard the public’s trust through open and transparent business practices that consistently maintain our credibility as strong ethical stewards of all the community’s resources.
The Council approved spending $25,000 to hire Bob Murray and Associates to oversee the recruitment process.
The annual salary range for the Assistant City Manager is $182,557.04 – $238,961.18, according to a job description Bob Murray and Associates posted. Placement within this salary range is dependent upon qualifications and experience. The City also offers an attractive benefits package including: Merit Increase — 5% merit increase may occur every 12 months until step 5 has been reached; thereafter, every 2 years for a total of 3 additional 2.5% increases.
A Southern California native, Fuentes holds a M.A. degree in Global Economics and a B.A. degree in International Business with a Minor in Economics, both from California State University, Los Angeles. She is married to her childhood sweetheart, Adam Fuentes, and enjoys spending her free time hiking with her husband and her dog Jax.
“The City of Cathedral City values openness and innovation as we work to improve the lives of our residents, businesses, and visitors through excellent public services,” stated McClendon. “Katherine has demonstrated a commitment to these same values, and I am confident she will help us move forward to an even brighter future.”
- Katherine Fuentes: City of Cathedral City