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Oberdorfer leaving Charlottesville for city manager role in Ohio

Deputy City Manager Paul Oberdorfer has taken a job as the city manager of Piqua, Ohio, continuing two years of turnover in Charlottesville’s top administrative office.

Oberdorfer announced the departure Friday. His last day in the office will be Dec. 31.

The city of about 21,000 people is about 30 miles north of Dayton, Ohio. Dayton’s City Commission will hold a special meeting on Tuesday to approve a resolution formalizing the hire.

Oberdorfer was also a candidate for the city manager job in Westerville, Ohio, according to ThisWeek Community News.

Oberdorfer was appointed a permanent deputy city manager in February by former City Manager Tarron Richardson after about six months serving in the role in an interim capacity.

He was the city’s public works director for two years prior to the new position. He came to the city in 2017 after working as director of public service for Green, Ohio, following a 19-year stint with the Ohio Department of Transportation.

As deputy city manager, Oberdorfer was tasked with oversight of public works, public utilities and Neighborhood Development Services.

Oberdorfer grew up in northeastern Ohio and said the move will put him closer to family. He commended the employees he worked with in management and the Public Works Department.

“I was really blessed to have a great team,” he said. “With its employees and their dedication, Charlottesville is really blessed.”

Interim City Manager John Blair said officials haven’t yet determined what will happen with the position following Oberdorfer’s departure.

“I’m happy for Paul and excited for him to advance his career as a city manager,” Blair said. “I thank him for his service to the city of Charlottesville.”

Oberdorfer’s appointment was part of Richardson’s reorganization of the city manager’s office in July 2019 from two assistant city managers to four deputy city managers.

The positions were filled by Oberdorfer, Leslie Beauregard, Mike Murphy and Deputy City Manager Letitia Shelton, who was Richardson’s deputy city manager in DeSoto, Texas.

The city manager’s office has churned through administrators since the start of 2018 and the fallout of the Unite the Right rally.

In 2018, City Manager Maurice Jones departed after the City Council announced it wouldn’t renew his contract.

Murphy was appointed interim after Jones’ departure until Richardson started in May 2019.

Beauregard left to take a job as assistant city manager in Staunton after Richardson’s reorganization.

Murphy abruptly resigned in December, but will remain on the payroll through his retirement date of Oct. 31.

Oberdorfer’s resignation leaves Shelton as the only deputy for Blair, who took over Oct. 1 after Richardson’s departure.

The city is reviewing eight proposals to lead a search for Richardson’s successor.


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